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Online food market hits new high in 2021 amid pandemic

(Yonhap)
(Yonhap)
South Korea's online food market jumped more than 35 percent to touch an all-time high in 2021 amid the coronavirus pandemic, data showed Monday.

The value of online food transactions in Asia's fourth-largest economy stood at 58.5 trillion won ($48.8 billion) last year, up 35.3 percent from a year earlier, according to the data from Statistics Korea and industry sources.

The tally covers online transactions of food, groceries, farm produce, meat and fisheries goods, as well as food delivery services.

Last year's surge was attributed to a sharp increase in contact-free consumption in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

Mobile shopping stood at 49.3 trillion won last year, or 84.3 percent of the total, with internet shopping taking up the remainder.

Last year's mobile shopping spiked 40.3 percent on-year in 2021, far outstripping the 13.7 percent increase in internet shopping.

With more people working from home, the market for food delivery services shot up 48.2 percent from a year earlier to 25.7 trillion won last year. Last year's amount was approximately 9.4 times the amount four years earlier, according to the data.

Industry sources said local food companies have been beefing up efforts to catch up with explosive growth in online shopping by reorganizing or incorporating their online malls. (Yonhap)
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