Hainan goes online to sell agricultural products amid epidemic
News source:People's Daily Online / 02 18,2020 14:40:00 / others

Farmers in southern China’s Hainan province, who previously had difficulties selling their products due to the novel coronavirus or Covid-19 epidemic outbreak, are now seeing a good turn with the help of e-commerce.

Hainan abounds with various kinds of vegetables and fruit. In winter, as the demand for fresh agricultural products rises across the country, farmers in the province are usually busy harvesting agricultural products and selling them.

Alibaba helps an agriculture company in Hainan sell melons. Photo provided by Alibaba

However, this year, because of the epidemic, the logistics network is not as smooth as it was, and as a result, there are not enough laborers on the production chain. “The sales channel has been blocked, resulting in a 50 percent drop in sales volume during the New Year holiday,” said Tang Lei, executive of a local agricultural product supplier.

To help farmers out, Hainan has taken measures such as granting farmers with allowances and rewards and resorting to e-commerce platforms as a new sales channel. For instance, after collaborating with Alibaba, Tang’s company started to see rising sales of fresh products after Feb. 3, and now the daily sales volume has reached 10 tons.

Credible sources with Alibaba confirmed that the company launched a special team to help farmers in Hainan pick, pack, store, sell, and deliver their products. This is also the first digital agricultural product supply chain in the province.

By Feb. 10, Alibaba had sold nearly 500 tons of fruit for Hainan farmers, and could make deliveries within 72 hours. According to Lin Haiyun, an official in charge of e-commerce work under the Hainan provincial commerce department, between Feb.1 and 10, a total of 40 e-commerce companies had helped Hainan sell 7,000 tons of agricultural products.

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