The world's leading merchants and processors of agricultural goods Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) and domestic coffee chain operator Luckin Coffee have signed an agreement on Thursday to establish a joint venture to develop a co-branded Luckin Juice business in China, cashing in on the country's fast-growing healthy drinks market.
The business will focus on co-branded orange, lemon and apple juices that are not from concentrate (NFC). Louis Dreyfus will be responsible for the full value chain from its farms to customers at destination, and plans to build its own bottling plant in the future.
It also plans to bottle and brand other fruit and vegetable juices.
Luckin Coffee stores will play an important role as sales outlets, while the business also plans to market its juices via other channels.
"China is the fastest-growing NFC market globally and, together, Luckin and LDC see a significant opportunity to offer high-quality, sustainably-developed NFC juices to the Chinese consumer," said Guo Jinyi, Luckin Coffee senior vice-president and co-founder.
Guo said they are pleased to be partnering with one of the world's largest citrus fruit growers and juice suppliers to launch a co-branded Luckin Juice and continue their ambitious growth plans.
There are strong synergies between the two sides, Guo said. Through the joint venture with LDC, Luckin is extending upstream toward production, giving greater product quality control along the whole process and the ability to offer better products, a better experience and better services to consumers, to further meet their diverse product needs.