Chinese consumers have developed a taste for New Zealand and Australian food, with one in three consumers having bought food online from the region in the last six months.

According to research from global market intelligence agency Mintel, food is the most imported Australian and New Zealand product by Chinese consumers.

Mintel said consumers in China were more likely to buy imported goods online, with almost three quarters of consumers having bought imported products online in the last six months compared with 56 per cent purchasing items in-store.

At consumer trends conference Mintel Big Conversation in Sydney today, research director Laurel Gu said there was a huge opportunity for Australian and New Zealand companies.


"Along with rapid urbanisation and higher disposable income, Chinese consumers are now among some of the world's biggest spenders," Gu said.

"With Australia and New Zealand both having reputations for their strong focus on natural ingredients, food and drink companies could see great success by tapping into Chinese consumers' healthy lifestyle, particularly within snacking occasions."

After general food, baby food and products were the second most popular range.

Overall, one in three of those who had purchased imported goods had bought baby food and products online from Australasia.

Alcohol was also popular with 16 per cent purchasing these products from New Zealand online.

Mintel's research also showed one in four Chinese consumers had visited Australia or New Zealand with 30 per cent planning a visit in the next 12 months.

"Increasing outbound travel to Australia and New Zealand has resulted in Chinese consumers associating quality, safety and naturalness with the region," Gu said.

"Because of this, manufacturers from these two countries are now in the sweet spot to capitalise on this interest."