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China: Fresh food e-commerce booming

Thanks to the booming development of e-commerce in China, more and more people are turning to fresh food apps for their daily shopping. Data from consulting firm iResearch shows China's fresh food e-commerce industry grew by 59.7% in 2017 to 139.1 billion yuan (22.1 billion U.S. dollars).

Among foods purchased online, fruit is the most frequently bought. Dairy products and vegetables ranked second and third, respectively. Fresh food e-commerce developed rapidly in China in 2014 and 2015, then experienced a reshuffle in 2016. However, e-commerce giants Alibaba and JD.com later reinvigorated the market by raising investments in supply chains and logistics.

JD.com also opened its first off-line fresh food supermarket in Beijing in January where customers can either buy in the shop or order on its app. The company said over 10,000 customers visited the 7FRESH supermarket each day during its trial period. Wang Xiaosong, president of 7FRESH, said it planned to open 1,000 shops across China within the next five years.

Xinhuanet.com reports that logistics account for a large part of the cost for fresh food e-commerce businesses. The report found that 30.7% of customers hoped to receive their goods within several hours, while 28.8% hoped delivery times could be shortened to between 30 and 60 minutes.

Publication date: 2/7/2018


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