The tentacles of China’s online retailers grow longer and more pervasive every day, reaching around the world to grab everything from Boston lobster to Norwegian salmon and dragging it home to grace dinner tables of China.
Online retailers JD.com and Alibaba’s Tmall.com are locked in battle to sign up overseas merchants and department stores for their newest marketplaces selling nothing but imported products. The competition between Alibaba and JD.com to ship goods directly from overseas to the customer’s doorstep in China has expanded from luxury clothing to baby formula and cosmetics. The latest catches are fresh meat and seafood.
These new offerings require sophisticated logistics. Meat and seafood have to be shipped and delivered at low temperature. Any delay can compromise freshness or even cause these posh delicacies to spoil.
In April, JD.com set up a site exclusively selling products from countries like France, Republic of Korea, New Zealand and the United States. On Thursday, the company signed a deal to sell Canadian fresh food and beverages.
JD’s arch-rival Alibaba embarked on a global campaign more than a year ago to lure international brands into opening stores on Tmall to sell directly to Chinese consumers, with meat and seafood riding the crest of a wave of fresh, imported produce.
Walmart-backed online grocery store yihaodian.com sells everything from Thai durian and Mexican avocadoes to red shrimp from Argentina.
Read more at ECNS.