New Zealand seafood exporters to try out ASMI-inspired online marketing campaign in China
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) has joined forces for the first time with China's most popular business-to-consumer online shopping platform Tmall.com, to promote New Zealand seafood in a week-long campaign.
The promotion with Tmall.com will take place between 9-15 April, allowing Chinese shoppers to buy live seafood fresh from the sea in New Zealand, then have it packaged and air freighted to Shanghai within 36 hours. Within 72 hours, the seafood orders will be delivered to Chinese consumers across the country. The New Zealand products available for sale include paua, greenshell mussels and Bluff and Pacific oysters.
The ability to sell and deliver live seafood to Chinese consumers is a significant milestone. A similar Tmall.com campaign with Alaskan seafood last year resulted in a total of 50 metric tonnes supplied to Chinese consumers.
Online shopping is a major trend in China. In 2013, the number of online shoppers surged to 302 million, surpassing the number of American online shoppers for the third year. Capitalising on growing demand from China for imported food, Tmall.com is continuing to build its fresh food platform through this joint promotion with NZTE.
Mike Arand, NZTE Trade Commissioner in Shanghai, said: "This channel gives New Zealand companies access to efficient and scalable ways to expand sales in China, so we are very excited to have our first New Zealand promotion with Tmall.com.
China is now Vietnam's 4th largest seafood market
China has emerged as the fourth largest importer of Vietnamese seafood lagging behind the US, Japan and the EU, and it is predicted to be a major Vietnamese seafood consumer in the coming years.
However, economists warn Vietnamese businesses will find it more difficult to break into this volatile market as competitive pressure is intensifying.
Pressure from China
The Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) reports China is a huge lucrative market for Vietnamese seafood for a number of reasons. It is close to the country which readily translates into lower transport costs. In addition, Vietnam can optionally transport products via land or sea routes on an economical and timely basis.
Furthermore, administrative quality procedures are not as strictly enforced as in other markets, reducing unnecessary administrative and other burdensome costs associated with long delays in transport and endless haggling and over technical matters.
Exports to China have surged sharply over the past 5 years, and shrimp exports have made a significant contribution to the common growth. The proportion of shrimp among total seafood exports to China rose from 13% in 2003 to 64% in 2011, 60% in 2012 and 66.6% in 2013.
Despite the global shrinking market, exports of key products to China have grown and flourished over the years, with shrimp rising 38.2%, Tra fish 23%, and octopus 4%. China is the fourth largest consumer of shrimp and the fifth of octopus from Vietnam.
China has recently introduced new regulations on protection of aquatic resources, but its seafood import-export scheme has not yet been completed.