BEIJING – One of the top restaurants in Beijing, the LAN Club, was selected as the site for one of the first tasting events for Spanish ham in the Chinese capital along with a modeling show for Spanish jewelry.
The ham, produced in Extremadura by the Montesano company and distributed in China by the Olivarero Chinese Spanish Consortium, or COCE, was the star of a luxurious and glitzy evening at the distinguished club, although the jewelry of Madrid designer Paloma Sanchez, who has a store in Beijing, was also prominently featured.
“This is an event to launch the ham in Beijing, to see if there’s any demand and position (it) as an exclusive luxury product, for the upper class. Therefore, we’ve accompanied it with the jewelry show,” said Daniel Martin, COCE’s general director and the organizer of the event.
The Chinese who attended the event were able to become acquainted first-hand with the ham that after many years of negotiations has finally arrived in Beijing, and the proof of its success was the fact that the trays containing the pricey delicacy became empty very quickly.
“The response was very positive. They were very interested, especially when it was explained to them why this is an expensive product, since its production is not massive, (and) besides it is ecological and has no additives,” Martin said.
COCE already has negotiated with two supermarket chains in Beijing, one specializing in catering to the Japanese community in the capital, since among the Japanese the ham is already a well-known product, and it will also be sold in more generalized stores, the businessman said.
“It’s not easy to enter (the Chinese market), since because of the swine flu more health certificates are required,” said Martin, who added that to bring the ham to China “you have to have very clear ideas.”