Benefiting from the recent China International Import Expo (CIIE), Shanghai residents will have more opportunity to taste and purchase imported fruits in either shopping malls or grocery stores, such as cherries from Chile, bananas from Ecuador, and coconuts from Thailand. But what is lesser known is that some fruit used in tea drinks is also imported.
Chilean cherries rise to fame
Chilean cherries rose to prominence in China’s fruit market a few years ago. However, the rising price confused consumers. During the Spring Festival, the fruit was jokingly nicknamed the most valued New Year present, as it cost around 100 yuan/kilo. Thanks to the second CIIE, Chile’s largest cherry producer and processing dealer signed a contract with a Shanghai fruit market to provide Chilean cherries for the East China region. Starting in December, the fresh cherries will be shipped to Shanghai with a total weight of over 100,000 tons. The increased supply will thus lower the price to around 60 yuan/kilo.
Dole’s fruit in fruit tea brands
Imported fruit also appears in the preparation areas of many tea drink shops. In some popular Chinese fruit tea brands like Lelecha and Heytea, some of the fruits are imported from an American food company, Dole. Actually, the supply from Dole started from the 2018 CIIE. Much to tea beverage enterprises’ delight, large-scale suppliers like Dole can provide sliced fruit, rather than raw materials.
Following the transformation of the retail market, Dole, during the CIIE, also decided to cooperate with O2O (Online to Offline, where on order is made online and then collected in person) fresh food startup Hema Fresh. Over the past year, bananas from the Philippines, imported pineapples, papayas and sugar pears have been extremely popular among Chinese consumers. To the delight of fruit lovers, in the near future, Ecuadorian bananas and Thai coconuts will be new arrivals to the Chinese market.
Besides supermarkets, fruit markets and tea drink shops, the Hongqiao Import Commodity Exhibition and Trade Center near the CIIE venue, situated at 2377 Shenkun Road, is a permanent platform for citizens to purchase imported fruit, as well as many other goods.