In scorching heat, consumers opt to buy seafood online

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In scorching heat, consumers opt to buy seafood online

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Samgyetang, Korean chicken ginseng soup, has long been the favored health food for the hot summer in Korea. However, as more fresh food options become available through online shopping and delivery, fresh seafood beat samgyetang in the health food list on the nation’s online shopping mall platform G-Market, the company said Tuesday.

Surging sales of samgyetang from a week prior to malbok - the last of the three hottest days of the year in the lunar calendar - have been overtaken by the growing popularity of seafood orders in the season, since last year, according to G-Market. While the exact date of malbok changes each year, this year’s malbok was Tuesday.

Seafood products on the health food list include octopus, abalone and eel.

In 2013, the weekly sales of Samgyetang well outpaced seafood, taking 68 percent share of G-Market’s health food sales, however as years past seafood sales grew from 10 percent share in 2013 to 22 percent in 2014 and 38 percent in 2015 robbing shares from Samgyetang.

This year’s exact sales data are yet to be accumulated, however seafood sales are showing an escalating trend with octopus’ weekly sales jumping 432 percent year on year from Aug.5 through Aug. 11. Overall seafood sales also increased 25 percent year on year in the same period.

“Development of quick packing and delivery technology enabled customers to safely order seafood online,” said Park Young-keun, a manager at fresh food division of G-Market.

The company packs live abalone through vacuum-packaging and ice patches.

Eel products are known as bracers for people sweating heavily under summer heat while octopus helps recovery from fatigue and detoxification, the company said in a statement.

Other popular health foods include duck which has consistently ranked in the top three health food sales list of G-Market, followed by hanwoo, Korean beef.


BY KIM JEE-HEE [kim.jeehee@joongang.co.kr]

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