The history of Oriental Merchant stems from a tradition of Asian grocery. In 1975, the third generation of the Yiu family of grocers from Hong Kong opened for business in Little Bourke Street Melbourne. Their business, Hong Oriental, was amongst the first to bring the trade of Asian groceries in Australia into the 20th century. Hong Oriental pioneered imports of tropical fruit and vegetables as well as frozen seafood, newspapers and magazines from all over the pacific and Asia.
In 1990, Hong Oriental merged with China Merchant, a major step forward in the trading of Asian foods in Australia. This resulted in the formation of Oriental Merchant Pty Ltd, concentrating on wholesaling, distribution and marketing of authentic Asian groceries.
Through its parent company, China Merchants, Oriental Merchant today is part of a global enterprise encompassing shipping, insurance, banking, finance, major infrastructure projects in China as well as an extensive commercial and property portfolio in Asia. As well as providing numerous overseas links, China Merchant provides Oriental Merchant with a secure base on which to grow.