On World Environment Day, June 5th, Freshippo, Alibaba Group’s digital intelligence-powered new retail company, announced the foundation of a sustainable development department. This year, the focus of the company will be on promoting full-chain sustainability by exploring and advocating sustainable agriculture and supply chains.
Shen Li, Co-founder at Freshippo and Head of Sustainable Development Department, stated that Freshippo recognizes its value and role in agriculture and the supply chain as it expands business. In response to the Chinese government’s rural revitalization strategy, Freshippo has taken active steps to develop green organic agriculture.
Freshippo formed long-term partnerships with over 100 organic companies in China, which operate across 268 bases and factories throughout the country. The company utilizes order-based agriculture to connect suppliers and consumers, resulting in more affordable prices for organic vegetables and reduced procurement costs.
Freshippo expanded its organic product line in recent years, now offering a variety of fresh food options including fruits, vegetables, rice, noodles, grains and dairy products. As a result, it has become the largest one-stop shopping platform for organic fresh food in mainland China. Since it launched these products in June 2018, the annual number of organic products users has grown to nearly 10 million.
Over the last 8 years, Freshippo and its suppliers have been working together to develop a sustainable supply chain. According to Shen, these efforts have involved reducing resource waste and agricultural losses. For instance, by transforming differently sized organic peaches from Beijing into freeze-dried peach crisps, they were able to decrease fresh peach waste by 400 kilograms per mu (approximately 666.67 m2) of land while increasing net income per mu of land by 1,200 yuan ($168.54).