Fonterra is to trial online sales of its Tip Top ice cream brand in China.
Tip Top will start selling six flavours of ice cream -- vanilla, chocolate, hokey pokey, cookies and cream, Neapolitan and strawberry -- in two-litre tubs, and said it is considering offering novelty sticks and bulk scoop products.
"China is Fonterra's biggest market and this trial is a small way we can add to our offering there," director Kim Ballinger said.
"There will be a lot to learn from this trial programme. We know the brand, sales platforms, and product formats will need to evolve to suit consumers' changing needs."
It will use Alibaba's Tmall platform to sell the ice cream and distribution will be handled by specialist frozen products distributor Zhuhai Ice Technology.
The company said research from Mintel, a London-based research firm, showed the total market value of ice cream sales in China increased by 90 percent to US$11.4 billion (NZ$16.32 billion) between 2008 and 2014.
However, the take-home ice cream segment Tip Top is targeting remains a relatively small part of the overall category and has room to grow.