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China's favorite retro cola makes comeback

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-03-18 10:53

China's favorite retro cola makes comeback

Back in the 1980s and 1990s, Tianfu had a strangle hold of 70 percent of China's soft drink market. The cola was also sold in Russia and America.[Photo/official weibo account of China Tianfu Cola]

Chinese cola brand Tianfu, the country's top-selling soft drink in the 1980s, formally returned to shop shelves on Thursday after being absent for nearly two decades.

The reincarnated cola, with the slogan "not just a familiar taste,"comes in bottles and cans.

"From the establishment of the brand to national popularity, to the disappearance after a joint venture (with Pepsi), the changes of Tianfu have coincided with twists and turns of my life," said Li Peiquan, 78, former general manger of Tianfu Cola, at the relaunch ceremony on Thursday in the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing.

Tianfu still uses a traditional herbal recipe to produce the healthy drink, said Qian Huang, the new general manger. The goal for this year is to sell 200,000 tonnes.

"We are first aiming for the domestic market but interested parties from overseas already contacted us to take Tianfu Cola abroad," he said. "Chongqing, where the factory is, has railways stretching to Europe, so our cola could easily sell there," said Qian.

Other nostalgia products, including chocolate champagne, fruit juice and vegetable protein drinks, will also hit the market soon, he said.

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