Alibaba now trading tonnes of salmon

Ole Alexander Saue

The Chinese online shopping giant has started a determined campaign to distribute salmon

Search “Norwegian salmon” on Alibaba, and you’ll get 311 hits. Search “Atlantic salmon” and you get 973 hits. Orders need only be between one and 600 tonnes.

While the great store mortality that has seized the U.S. in recent years after the incursions made by online shopping, seafood — including Norwegian salmon — has, to an increasing degree, been distributed online. Big players Alibaba and Amazon have now sold salmon in great volume.

Norway trip
SalmonBusiness has learned that Alibaba will soon take a wideranging tour of Norway and its aquaculture industry value chain to learn about Norwegian salmon and to get to know suppliers. One of the world’s biggest retail players, Alibaba in 2017 saw USD 23.8 billion in turnover.

Read B.C. salmon farmers not rushing to Alibaba

Company founder, Jack Ma, has set big goals for the future and has set the goal of serving over two billion internet customers worldwide by 2036. That’ll make Alibaba the world’s fifth largest economy, bettered only by China, the European Union, Japan and the U.S., Forbes Magazine has reported.

Alibaba wouldn’t comment on the coming Norwegian visit, but it’s reason to believe the company has ambitions in Norway and its seafood.

No minimum
Amazon, meanwhile, might not have come as far as Alibaba and is still only offering processed salmon. A search for “salmon” in the Amazon category “fish” yields 134 results. Few of its products are salmon filets, and no minimum orders were required.

Read Walmart, Rakuten prepare online Japanese ordering

Yet, German smoker Gottlieb Friedrich has started selling salmon on Amazon. After all, the Seattle-based online electronics seller, Amazon, is the world’s largest e-commece player if measured by earnings and market value.

“Actually, we sell our product to Amazon, and they sell the product and take the risk. We ship it to their chilled warehouse. They work very seriously with this, taking care of the right temperature, so there is no higher food safety risk involved,” Gottlieb chief exec, Alexander von Reisswitz, said to SalmonBusiness about the company’s December 2017 deal with Amazon.


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