Alibaba, JD.com and Pinduoduo have all launched separate initiatives to help revive the farming industry in Hubei, China, the epicentre of the coronavirus.
The outbreak, which is thought to have started in Hubei’s capital Wuhan, is expected to have cost China’s economy $4.1 trillion or around five per cent of the global gross domestic product.
Last week Alibaba introduced a special section on its Taobao marketplace to sell goods from farmers in the region, aiming to sell 1.2 million tonnes of agricultural products this year.
It also announced plans to sell 1 billion yuan’s worth of crayfish from Hubei, the country’s largest source of crayfish, and will offer its Taobao live platform for county officials to promote their products.
“Hubei has made great sacrifices and contributions to the fight against the epidemic nationwide,” Alibaba’s vice president Hou Yi said.
“We will work … for the recovery of Hubei’s agricultural industry.”
Meanwhile JD.com launched a similarly dedicated page on its platform, while announcing a new “Buy Hubei Goods” event to promote more than 90,000 items of fresh produce from Hubei, which is a key producer of tea, cotton and rice in China.
Another 10 initiatives are reportedly in the works from JD.com, including logistics support and merchant enrolment schemes.
Like its larger rival, JD.com said it plans to sell 100,000 tonnes worth of Hubei crayfish worth over 6 billion yuan, while providing crayfish standards and quality control services.
Pinduoduo is also reportedly offering numerous marketing subsidies to Hubei-based suppliers, while also inviting local officials from locations across Hubei to take part in live streaming for sales campaigns.