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Local boba against the world: How homegrown brands shake international competitors

Jessicha Valentina
Jessicha Valentina

The Jakarta Post

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Jakarta  /  Wed, October 16, 2019  /  11:05 am
Local boba against the world: How homegrown brands shake international competitors

IN tea offers boba drinks made from palm sugar. (JP/Wienda Parwitasari)

Taiwanese tapioca pearl milk tea, popularly known as bubble tea or boba, is currently trending in Indonesia, particularly Jakarta. Popular international brands, such as Xing Fu Tang, Tiger Sugar and OneZo, have opened outlets across the capital, creating a phenomenon of people lining up for hours to get a cup of boba and tighter competition in the lifestyle drinks market. Food blogger Hans Danial said bubble tea was a trend that came and went. “But [the trend] is returning after the appearance of brown sugar boba. Since then, I have seen many people creating new brands or new drinks in existing brands,” he said.  Felicia Sugita, a student, is one of the boba lovers who is willing to spend 1.5 hours in a queue for the drink. She told The Jakarta Post that she had tried almost every brand available and now limited herself to "only" buying boba once...