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Alibaba snares two US manufacturers in bid to attract more imports

By RJ Whitehead

- Last updated on GMT

© iStock
© iStock

Related tags China

Chinese online retail giant Alibaba has announced a deal with Driscoll’s and Chicken of the Sea to bring American foods to the world’s largest consumer market. 

Through the strategic collaboration, Chinese consumers will be able to buy fresh strawberries and high-quality seafood directly through Alibaba's Tmall platform. 

The e-commerce business made the announcement at Gateway ’17, its inaugural conference that focuses on helping American small businesses, farmers and entrepreneurs explore growth opportunities overseas in response to Chinese consumers’ demand for high-quality American foods. 

The Chinese market opportunity for fresh, American-grown produce is tremendous and we believe Alibaba allows us to expand consumer access to our berries, and we’ll be able to take full advantage of that opportunity​,” said Jae Chun, Driscoll’s vice-president and general manager of China. 

We look forward to making our finest berries available to Chinese consumers​.” 

Faisal Sheikh, managing director of emerging markets at Thai Union/Chicken of the Sea, added: “Chinese consumers are increasingly discerning and demanding, putting a premium on safety and quality when shopping for fresh and chilled seafood, such as lobster, shrimp and salmon​. 

Everyone at Chicken of the Sea is excited to join forces with Alibaba, to provide the highest-quality seafood available directly to the Chinese consumer​.” 

China presents unique opportunities for American producers due to strong demand for their products—and especially fresh produce. 

According to Produce Report, 36m households in China bought fresh products online in 2016, and that number is expected to double by 2020. 

Alibaba has developed strategic cooperations and services that enable American producers, wholesalers and associations to export fresh and prepared foods directly to Chinese consumers with ease. 

Cainiao Network, Alibaba’s logistics affiliate, enables same-day and next-day delivery in more than 1,100 counties and districts in China. 

"We are thrilled to welcome these two companies onto our platform and to help facilitate their journey to reach millions of Chinese consumers​,” said Jet Jing, vice-president of Alibaba Group. 

"These mutually beneficial partnerships will allow Alibaba to diversify the options available to consumers on our platforms, and we can help both Driscoll’s and Chicken of the Sea to successfully build their brand and presence in China​." 

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