by Vivian Yang
Argentina's red shrimps, Chilean cherries, Danish butter cookies, Malaysian durians and Sri Lanka's Ceylon tea… As the Chinese spring festival draws closer, Chinese consumers' demand for imported foreign specialties is also rising as sales data shows on JD.com.
It is high time for JD couriers to deliver these festival goods and gifts to millions of Chinese families. To some lucky Beijing residents' surprise, they find their orders appeared at their doorsteps together with the ambassadors of the countries where the products originate.
These ambassadors to China from Argentina, Chile, Denmark, Georgia, Malaysia, Moldova, Peru, Rwanda, and Sri Lanka, are invited by JD.com as special delivery envoys who embarked on the mission to shadow JD's busy couriers in driving the electric tricycles, trotting through residence and office compounds and climbing up old building stairs, in order to meet face-to-face with Chinese customers who fancy their countries' products and culture and exchange their respective stories for deeper mutual understanding and friendship.
These undercover missions in which some of the ambassadors dressed in JD couriers' red uniform and wore the company's employee badges with their honorary title of "Chief Promoting Officer", started on Jan 5, before the launch of the Chinese New Year (CNY) Grand Promotion on January 9th until the "little new year" day, which falls on the 25th this year and traditionally marks the official beginning of the spring festival preparation, also known as the Festival of the Kitchen God, which explains the reason why most of the ordered products are for eating and drinking.
All the products involved in this plan are imported by JD Worldwide, the cross-border e-commerce and JD Fresh, the fresh produce department of JD.com. Some highlights of the delivery mission include:
Argentine ambassador H.E. Sabino Vaca Narvaja sent Argentine red wine and red shrimps to a special customer, 84-year-old former Chinese ambassador to Argentina, H.E. Xu Yicong, who believes the "redness" was auspicious for the new year. On the first week of JD's CNY Grand Promotion, sales of Argentine wine pavilion site on JD.com increased 150% compared with the previous week.
Chilean ambassador H.E. Luis Schmidt Montes shoulder-carried a box of Chilean cherries to Ms. Zhang's home. Ambassador Schmidt shared his memory that when he first came to China in 1991, he had dreamt of bringing Chile's wines and fruits to China, but the far distance between the two countries made the idea too hard to realize then. Some 30 years later today, China has become Chilean cherries' largest market in the world and in 2021, JD Fresh quadrupled its year-on-year direct-purchase of Chilean fruits.
Georgian Ambassador H.E. Archil Kalandia delivered a bottle of Georginan Brandy to Mr.Zhu's home. The ambassador spoke fluent Mandarin and proudly introduced Georgia as the world's "birthplace of wines". He also expressed that he is glad to see Chinese consumers have the opportunity to taste the oldest Georgian wines through JD.com.
Moldovan Ambassador H.E. Dumitru Braghis also sent his country's wines to the home of Mr.Li Xiaobai's, a Marathon grand slam runner. He told the ambassador that he learnt that Moldova has the world's biggest underground wine cellar with a total of 200 kilometers in length, and said that maybe one day he can host a unique Marathon game in this place.
Rwanda's Ambassador H.E. James Kimonyo delivered the country's coffee ordered by a staff working at the China-African Business Council. Mr. Kimonyo noted that convenient e-commerce infrastructure plays a positive role in connecting Chinese consumers with more and more African products and presents new opportunities for Africa's agricultural development.
Sri Lanka's Ambassador H.E. Dr. Palitha Kohona sent Ceylon tea to a couple surnamed Zhang. As a tea expert, Dr. Kohona was invited to demonstrate the tea making process in their home. He pointed out that in 2020, Sri Lanka exported 15 million kilograms of tea to China, and he hopes the number will grow to 30 million in the next three years.
Moreover, Peruvian ambassador H.E. Luis Quesada sent chocolates, quinoa and alpaca dolls; Danish Deputy Head of Mission Dorthe Lange delivered cookies selections; and Malaysian Ambassador H.E. Raja Dato' Nushirwan Zainal Abidin delivered durians and pineapple cakes to Chinese customers.
Due to the travel quarantine restriction, Italian Ambassador to China, H.E. Luca Ferrari assigned Mr. Gianpaolo Bruno, Trade Commissioner of Italian Trade Commission Beijing Office, to participate this event on his behalf. Mr. Bruno delivered Italian Chocolate to a customer surnamed Zhang, who is a veteran industry designer and loves Italian chocolate all his life. Zhang is innovating his design on ski boots, targeting Winter Olympics in Milan 2026. Bruno and Zhang both wish the great success of Beijing and Milan Winter Olympics.
In the past two years from 2020 to 2021, JD spent more than 310 billion RMB or $43.3 billion USD on imported products purchase, serving as the primary gateway for international brands to China and driving cross-border consumption on the Chinese market.
On the logistics side, this year marks the 10th year in a row that JD.com commits to non-stop delivery service in all parts of the country during the Spring Festival holidays, ensuring that customers across the country can receive their orders on time.
In addition, JD.com is named the exclusive interactive partner for the China Media Group's Spring Festival Gala 2022, the most-watched television program in the world. The company will give out 1.5 billion RMB or $240 million USD worth of virtual red envelopes and physical gifts via JD's APP during the festival celebration campaign from January 24th to February 15th.