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Future of Agriculture

Welcome to the Future of Agriculture Podcast with Tim Hammerich. This show explores the people, companies, and ideas shaping the future of agribusiness. If you are curious about innovations in AgTech, rural entrepreneurship, agricultural sustainability, and food security, this is the show for you! For more details on the guests featured on this show, visit the blog at www.FutureOfAg.com. Or, to learn more about career opportunities in agriculture, visit www.AgGrad.com Make sure you’re subscribed so you can catch another fascinating ag innovator next week!
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Now displaying: Page 1
Apr 7, 2021

Please participate in our listener survey to help us focus the direction of the show: https://airtable.com/shrCB33GWIUCIxVRU 

E-commerce is nothing new. I think all of us have probably bought more online than ever this past year. But the company we’re featuring today, Pinduoduo, has taken this to a whole other level by gamifying e-commerce and making it a social experience. A big part of their strategy is selling agricultural products online. One of the biggest drivers changing the future of agriculture is consumer preferences, what they buy and how they buy it. Today we explore some pretty incredible insights into how this is changing in China. 

We have on the show Xin Yi Lim, who is the executive director of Sustainability and Agricultural Impact at Pinduoduo. The platform, which has been described as “where Costco meets Disney”, started in 2015 and has grown to over 700 million active users in China. Before joining Pinduoduo in 2018, Xin Yi worked for SIngapore’s sovereign wealth fund, GIC, both in its Singapore and New York offices as a technology and media analyst. 

“Really what we are trying to provide is a way for producers or merchants to sell a larger volume of products in a shorter period of time. And in so doing, they can reap the benefits of economies of scale and how we do that is through this notion of a team purchase. So it starts off by the realization that for a lot of people, what you actually want to buy for things like say food or fresh produce can be influenced by those around you.” - Xin Yi Lim

 

She highlights that this opportunity gives producers “a lot more visibility” to their consumers by allowing customers to share their interests and purchases. Pinduoduo introduced team purchase to consumers with discounted products and has expanded to including a gaming component. Participants can play a game that results in free or discounted produce. This allows Pinduoduo to not only get more engagement from their users but also to see which participants are most influential to other users. In fact 90% of their revenue comes from merchant advertising targeting likely consumers. 

 

“As we continue to grow, I think it's really also gone beyond just a team purchase. It's also encouraging more and more interactions by the users with the platform. So like what I mentioned earlier, that social graph of how you interact with your friends, how you influence them and they influence you. That helps us to refine our idea of what it is that you're interested in and give you the right recommendations.” - Xin Yi Lim

 

Pinduoduo has expanded beyond grocery items and also supplies agricultural inputs among other products. Xin Yi Lim comments that she has seen value and influence for agricultural producers from live streaming efforts by scientists, agronomists and other fellow producers suggesting the ongoing expansion of the scope of potential influence. 

 

This Week on The Future of Agriculture Podcast:

  • Meet Xin Yi Lim, who is the executive director of Sustainability and Agricultural Impact at Pinduoduo
  • Explore this e-commerce platform that is influencing consumer trends and allowing producers to distribute their product at a higher volume
  • Learn about the wide array of products Pinduoduo provides to its customers and the techniques they use to entice consumers to buy on their platform

 

Join the FOA Community!

Be sure to join the new Future of Agriculture Membership for even more valuable information on the future of the ag industry. I’m sending out my email newsletter on a more regular basis, focusing on what I call the front lines of agtech: where product meets producer. You can sign up for that at www.FutureOfAg.com. There’s an email icon in the center of the page, just click on that and it will take you to a signup form.

Do you have suggestions for topics to be explored? Tweet them to me @timhammerich or email them to tim@aggrad.com

Find us online!

Future of Agriculture Website

AgGrad Website

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