Business / Industries

Online farm produce sales increase: report

(Xinhua) Updated: 2013-01-11 09:58

HANGZHOU - Although clothing, books and home appliances have long been popular items for online shoppers, more Chinese are now buying their groceries online as well.

Sales of farm produce on and, two online marketplaces owned by the Alibaba Group, totaled 19.8 billion yuan ($3.14 billion) in 2012, according to a report on online farm produce sales released by the group on Wednesday.

The number of online vendors registered at the county, township and village levels rose 24.4 percent year-on-year to reach 1.63 million by the end of 2012, with 260,000 of the stores selling produce, according to the report.

Tea is the most popular item, with daily trade exceeding 7 million yuan ($1.11 million), followed by dates, nuts, honey products and other dried goods.

Fresh fruit and seafood have registered the fastest growth, with annual sales quadrupling last year, according to the report.

"E-commerce business models for farm produce are becoming more diverse," said Liang Chunxiao, vice president of the Alibaba Group, adding that the future trade of farm produce will feature a combination of online and offline sales methods.

"The marketing of farm produce through social networking services is gaining momentum," Liang said.


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