Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Selling high quality caviar to elite customers in the Kingdom

Selling high quality caviar to elite customers in the Kingdom

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The high-quality caviar imported from France. Photo supplied

Selling high quality caviar to elite customers in the Kingdom

The luxury caviar is for the tsars and kings, like the adage goes. Wonder how to sell such an exotic delicacy in the Cambodian market, where hawkers’ food and Khmer traditional cuisines are hot on the people’s main menu?

It is unimaginable. But, not for Frenchman Bernard Matter who is doing exactly that business in Cambodia, selling high quality expensive caviar to a selected elite customers for the last one year.

“Caviar is the most expensive food. Only one percent of the Cambodian population of about 16 million eat caviar.

“The demand is coming from very rich Cambodians who can afford,” Matter, the Chief Executive Officer of Caviar and Traditions, told The Post last Tuesday.

He sells the Comptoir du Caviar brand imported from France to his close circle of clientele, and Matter’s exclusive customers’ identities are kept as a tight secret.

Perhaps, the price of the caviar, which is dubbed as the “black pearl” explains the secrecy surrounding caviar buyers in the Kingdom.

The caviar Matter sells, mostly farmed in the Caspian Sea and Black Sea, are priced nothing less than $1,400 per kg to $7,800 per kg ‑ believe it not!

“Our caviar is from original sturgeon and not hybrid, and all our products are farmed. Eventually it has to be farming, a sustainable source of caviar. We don’t want to empty the seas ...,” he said.

To protect the dwindling stock of the female sturgeon due to over fishing as result of rising demand, strict international rules have been imposed to curb fishing of sturgeons in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea.

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Matter, the caviar entrepreneur. Photo supplied

His products are not available on local supermarket shelves or retail outlets but sold directly to customers, packed and delivered in fashionable way by well-trained staff.

“It is a niche market, very small market because it is very expensive. We only sell about 10 to 15 kg per month."

“About 10 percent of our customers are hotels and restaurants, and the rest are private sales,” said Matter, who once owned a boutique hotel in Phnom Penh.

Well, what is this mystic caviar after all, which has mesmerised the rich and famous for decades?

Traditionally, the term caviar refers only to roe from wild sturgeon in the Caspian Sea and Black Sea (Beluga, Ossetra and Sevruga caviars).

Operating from his posh residence in Phnom Penh, Matter’s company imports a range of caviar – Caviar Beluga, which originates from Iran and Bulgaria, the Caviar Oscietre and Caviar Bearrii from Poland.

“Caviar is really a good delicacy, it is very rare so it is very expensive. It is tasty and good for health, it contains Omega 3 and Omega 6, minerals and Oligo elements ,” he said.

Now, Matter plans to expand his business and eyeing to open a storage facility in Singapore.

“The main storage facility will be in operation in the third quarter of 2019. From there we can supply to countries like Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with

  • PM takes time to meet, greet Cambodians living in the US

    After landing in the US ahead of the ASEAN-US Special Summit, Prime Minister Hun Sen was received by over 1,000 Cambodian-Americans including political analysts who welcomed him with greetings, fist bumps and selfies. Hun Sen also met with analyst Mak Hoeun, who had allegedly spoken ill

  • Khmer cinema classics back on big screen for free at WB Arena’s outdoor movies series

    On a recent Saturday evening at WB Arena, Bunsong was enjoying a tasty BBQ meal with his family after work on the long tables that had been arranged out in front of the restaurant as they watched a Khmer action movie on a big outdoor

  • PM heads to Washington for ASEAN-US special summit

    Regional and international issues and how to bring the ASEAN-US partnership to another level will be discussed at length as Prime Minister Hun Sen and his ministers arrive in Washington, DC, for a special summit on May 12-13. During the trip, Hun Sen and ASEAN

  • National Assembly refutes EU resolution

    The National Assembly (NA) has hit back at a European Parliament resolution condemning the political and human rights situation in Cambodia, calling it another display of the Parliament’s “double standards”. Key points of the resolution include a warning that the Parliament could exclude the