The Ministry of Culture-led "Fresh Taiwan" project was launched in 2012 to help local creative entrepreneurs take part in a variety of major design exhibitions and gain greater exposure in international markets. Having finally acquired a registered trademark this year, Fresh Taiwan is now actively promoting the works of these entrepreneurs through museums like the National Palace Museum.
This year, the project chose 22 outstanding cultural and creative brands to promote in the European, American, and Southeast Asian markets, including — to substantial success — the Ambiente international consumer goods show in Frankfurt. Next up is the New York home, lifestyle, and gift show NY NOW in August, followed by the Bangkok International Gift Fair and Bangkok International Houseware Fair in October.
The Fresh Taiwan trademark was approved by the Ministry of Economic Affairs in July and stands to become the international symbol of Taiwanese design and quality. The project is partnering for the first time with the National Palace Museum, with Fresh Taiwan creators working with the museum to develop co-branded products to be sold at the world-renowned institution. The NPM has also provided Fresh Taiwan participants with a small amount of funding in hopes of fostering potential joint creative endeavors and translating cultural heritage into commercial value.
With its focus on museums as a potential sales channel, this year Fresh Taiwan will be visiting seven well-known New York museums, including The Met and MoMA, with aims to negotiate with them to get top Taiwan-designed products in front of both the American public and visiting travelers from around the globe.
Fresh Taiwan also led a team of ten Taiwanese brands to the world's largest and most influential consumer goods show, the Frankfurt-hosted Ambiente, earlier this year, attracting attention from some heavyweight buyers such as American chain Crate & Barrel, Dutch pet goods brand See Scout Sleep, the multipronged British group Virgin, and Bank of India. From such buyers, these ten brands are expected to secure some NT$48 million in orders, reflecting a 13.6% increase on the previous year.
The Bangkok fairs in October will be Fresh Taiwan's final stop for 2018, and ahead of them the group will be heading to the EmQuartier mall and to Open House bookstore to meet business partners and hold their first buyer exchange evening. There, Thai entrepreneurs and interior designers will interact with Taiwanese designers to foster more and stronger cooperative opportunities.
Fresh Taiwan is set to be the kind of backup designers dream of, helping Taiwanese brands take off globally and shine in international exhibitions and trade shows, and taking orders to new heights.
'Fresh Taiwan' at NY NOW