Honey Butter Chip-hunting app created for ongoing craze

December 24, 2014
Getting hold of Honey Butter Chip packs is becoming increasingly difficult as demand far exceeds supply amid the growing popularity of the snack. (Korea Times file)

Getting hold of Honey Butter Chip packs is becoming increasingly difficult as demand far exceeds supply amid the growing popularity of the snack. (Korea Times file)

In the latest development, a so-called “Honey Butter Chip-hunting” smartphone app was launched recently, making it possible for its users to monitor availability at adjacent convenience stores ㅡ within five kilometers ㅡ on a real-time basis. Nearly 1,000 people had downloaded the app as of Wednesday.

It is obvious that Haitai is the biggest beneficiary of the nationwide obsession. Sales of the chips have gone through the roof. Accumulated sales of the product reached 13.6 billion won ($12.32 million) as of the end of November. That is about 3 billion won a month in an industry where 1 billion won in monthly sales is a marker of success for a new product.

The accumulated sales are expected to reach 20 billion won ($18.1 million) by the end of the year, according to the company. At this pace, the chips will grow into a “blockbuster” product, raking in up to 50 billion won($45.3 million) in sales next year, officials said.

Rival companies recently launched emulated products to cash in.

Haitai spokesman So Sung-su attributed the jackpot to an “optimal combination of salty, sweet and buttery tastes that suit the palate of many Koreans.”

The state fair trade regulator said Wednesday it was taking a close look at the product’s supply and demand to crack down on any unfair business practices.

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