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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Smog has air purifiers flying off the shelves (2)

By  He Wei and Xing Yu  (China Daily)

08:38, December 07, 2011

On Taobao.com, the country's biggest online marketplace by registered users, air cleaning products such as air purifiers and humidifiers are the hottest search items on its homepage, said Qiao Peilei, a spokeswoman with Alibaba Group Holdings Ltd, the parent company of Taobao.

In the past 30 days, HYG Appliances Co Ltd, a Shenzhen-based electronics retailer, sold 5,541 of a certain type of humidifier through its e-commerce channel on Tmall.com, the business-to-customer arm of Alibaba.

A HYG salesman said that's three times the amount sold last month and a 20 percent year-on-year increase. He added that 60 percent of the orders were delivered to Beijing and neighboring Hebei province.

Cao Qi, an online vendor at Tmall.com, said they usually receive 100 to 200 orders for anti-dust masks a day, but "on Monday alone we took 800 orders, and I think we could have more than 1,000 on Tuesday".

Giant appliance chain stores have also noticed the trend.

Suning Appliance Co Ltd, the leading home appliance retailer by transaction volume, said air purifier sales in Beijing have been off the charts since November.

"People snapped up air cleaning products because of the bad weather, and sales in one outlet in Beijing even doubled compared with this period last year," Suning wrote in an e-mail to China Daily.

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