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PChome sees snack, beverage sales rise in Ghost Month
Central News Agency
2014-08-05 11:20 AM
Taipei, Aug. 5 (CNA) Online retailer PChome Store Inc. said Monday it has seen snacks and beverages fly off the virtual shelves ahead of the Ghost Festival Aug. 10, when food for ritualistic offerings is in high demand. "We have seen snack and beverage sales rise 40 percent and 60 percent, respectively, when compared with the same period a year earlier," said Tsai Kai-wen, vice general manager of PChome Store, according to a company statement. "Online shopping has become one of the most important and popular ways for Ghost Festival shopping," Tsai said, adding that his company also prepared a wide range of choices for consumers. The company's PChome24h platform currently offers over 35,000 different food items, with its inventory of snacks alone increasing 40 percent from last year. Ghost Month is usually a high season for e-commerce industry, PChome said, adding that it is expecting a 30 percent annual increase in the sale of such items. Snacks in particular are big business during Ghost Month, the seventh month on the lunar calendar, which runs this year from July 27 to Aug. 24. It is traditionally believed to be a period when hungry ghosts emerge from the lower realm and must be placated with offerings of their favorite foods from the land of the living. Other shopping sites such as Yahoo Kimo, Momoshop, GoHappy and udn also have special promotions to boost the "ghost economy" during the month. Ghosts aside, Taiwan's e-commerce market is expected to soar over the next few years as the online shopping sector continues to develop rapidly in line with global trends. With annual growth of some 20 percent, revenue from Taiwan's e-commerce transactions reached NT$767.3 billion in 2013 and is expected to exceed NT$1 trillion by 2015, according to a May estimate by the government-backed Institute for Information Industry. Yahoo Taiwan's e-commerce group also predicted in late June that the local e-commerce market will soon account for more than half of the retail market, which is estimated at an average NT$4 trillion per annum. (By James Lee)
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