Mingli Yan from Shandong Province had been watering a virtual mango tree on the Pinduoduo App for over six weeks. Finally, she received a notification that her virtual mangos had matured and in three days, Yan received a free box of six mangos from Sichuan Province. These were from the 9,000-kilogram order of mangos Pinduoduo had bought from local farmers.

Duo Duo Orchard, introduced in May 2018, aims to encourage consumers to interact and share while they shop on Pinduoduo. It has become a popular feature where users can grow virtual fruit trees for a free box of fruit. Over 11 million daily active users (DAU) log on to the game to water their trees. Duo Duo Orchard not only is an effective channel for incentivizing consumers to browse and purchase, but it also allows users to interact and enjoy the fun of shopping with friends.

Here’s an overview of how consumers can win a free box of fruit.

Duo Duo Orchard brings fun to mobile shopping
Duo Duo Orchard brings fun to mobile shopping

Duo Duo Orchard has been incredibly popular since it launched in 2018. In June last year, a month after the game launched, nearly two million new virtual trees were planted every day. Pinduoduo gave out over 500,000 kilograms of free fruit every day, benefiting not only consumers but also growers in rural areas.

As more consumers plant virtual trees for the reward of free fruit from Pinduoduo, growers receive more orders for their harvests. With Pinduoduo’s large fruit orders directly from rural growers, these growers can sell their fresh produce at a higher price as the additional layers of redistribution are removed. Leveraging its AI-driven algorithm, Pinduoduo can also predict the demand for fruit, and share this information with growers so that instead of harvesting the fruit early in order to ensure more time for selling, farmers can pick the fruit for later delivery without worrying that a delayed harvest will hurt their income. As a result of this stable demand for fruit from Pinduoduo consumers, these growers are now receiving a steady income and Pinduoduo is helping to alleviate poverty in rural areas in China.

Ms. Chen from Hubei Province, who bought almost all of her daily necessities on Pinduoduo, began planting virtual trees in the Duo Duo Orchard in June last year. She mainly buys products from the Duo Duo Orchard recommendations as these give her more water droplets to help grow her tree. “I have over 20 friends who are planting their own trees in the Duo Duo Orchard. We all love the free fruit given the recent price hikes in fruit,” said Ms. Chen. “But it’s not just about the fun and the free fruit. Pinduoduo sources its fruit from growers in poverty-stricken areas, so I feel that in a small way, I am helping to increase the growers’ income simply by playing the game.”

Hua Sheng Green Energy, a supplier for Duo Duo Orchard, ordered 1,500 tons of mangos from Jijia Huang, a local grower in a remote village in Southeastern Guangxi Province. Huang had a good harvest the year prior but had struggled to sell it all before much of the harvest was rotten. This year, Hua Sheng Green Energy bought all the mangos from Huang and his neighboring growers at a price of RMB 2.4 per kilogram, higher than the previous wholesale price. Huang and his neighboring growers earned RMB 1,000 more this year which they could then invest in more seeds and better equipment for the next harvest. Pinduoduo’s business model and the Duo Duo Orchard game is creating a virtuous cycle for farmers and their families to improve their livelihoods.