Enjoy hairy crabs from the comfort of home


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Facebook: Hairy Crab At Home

A SEASONAL speciality, hairy crabs are known to be expensive, fiddly to cook and eat, and better enjoyed in a Chinese restaurant. However, a pair of young upstarts who want to debunk that view have launched their own online seafood store on Facebook.

It is the brainchild of fresh business graduates Jason Xie, 25, and Lee Yuan Rong, 26, who didn't want desk-bound jobs and saw a market for the delicacy. The pair also wanted to keep prices affordable so that they could reach out to a broader range of crab lovers and not just those who can afford it in restaurants.

The partners said, "We wanted to try and introduce, first and foremost, the idea of eating hairy crabs at home."

And knowing how easily the crabs can be prepared, they saw no reason why Singaporeans should not enjoy preparing it themselves at more affordable prices than what food outlets tend to charge.

The savings are significant - a single 200g hairy crab typically sells for about $60 in a restaurant, but the duo are just charging $138 for six pieces of similar-sized crabs. Prices are kept affordable because running an online business means they do not have to worry about rent, and the savings are passed on to buyers through weekly promotions and special discounts.

Being on Facebook also allows the duo to interact more closely with their customers to find out their likes and dislikes, and tailor things to customers' needs. But despite running a business in cyberspace, they believe in adding a personal touch. Hence, all orders are delivered personally.

"Some would say that this is an inefficient way of doing things. However, I remain firm on providing our consumers with the best possible experience" said Mr Xie. More than that, it also ensures that they can explain to their customers how to properly clean and prepare the crabs, so the crustaceans will end up tasting as good as those served in a high-end restaurant.

The personal touch also extends to informing customers of the quality of their crabs, which are issued an Animal Health Certificate from Lake Taihu, China, to ensure they are healthy and free of infection before they are even allowed into the country. They also go through additional checks at Singapore Customs.

And what will happen when hairy crab season is over? The pair hope to continue supplying Singaporeans with premium-quality seasonal seafood - delivered straight to the doorstep

This article was first published on October 18, 2014.
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