Whether bubble tea or xiao long bao, what makes these Taiwanese foods so irresistible?

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2020 7/14

【Food Industry Trends】Why people are fascinated with bubble tea (boba milk tea)?

【Food Industry Trends】Why people are fascinated with bubble tea (boba milk tea)? QRCODE

According to research, the global bubble tea market is expected to grow by US$2 billion and reaches US$4.3 billion by 2027. Whether bubble tea or xiao long bao, what makes these Taiwanese foods so irresistible?


Classic Taiwanese Cuisine found on the Global Market Stage

Classic Taiwanese Cuisine found on the Global Market Stage

Food plays an absolute important part of local Taiwanese culture. From various themed restaurants, street vendors to supermarkets, whether it's exquisite dim sum or daily snacks, there's always something to nibble on in Taiwan, anytime, anywhere. Many first time visitors are intrigued by the diversity of food choices in Taiwan, and are fascinated with the varieties.

Amongst all, Xiao Long Bao (steamed soup dumplings), Pineapple Cakes and Bubble Tea (aka "Boba Milk Tea") are the most common, interesting food and beverage items that have made its fame and popularity across the globe, luring foodies around the world.


Xiao Long Bao

xiao long bao

It may have originated in the Jiangsu province in China, but xiao long bao have been refined in Taiwan. These little bao/dumplings are filled with minced meat and broth jelly, then folded and sealed in paper-thin wraps to perfection; after steam-cooking, the jelly melts into hot soup, which is scrumptiously tempting and needs to be consumed at just the right temperature, so it doesn't burn the mouth and tongue.

Xiao long bao are often served steaming hot in a bamboo steamer; each little dumpling is formed in the shape of a flower bud, they are folded precisely and delicately to create layers, texture and stunning visual effects, which almost always bring a “wow” to the diners at the table.

Nowadays, xiao long baos have successfully reached the European, American, Russian, Middle Eastern and Australian markets; with famous restaurants such as Ding Tai Feng from Taiwan, there are also brands such as Yang's(楊家點心) by Nichigyoku from Japan. Many special flavors were invented to meet the market demands in different regions, to satisfy the local consumers.

Read More: ANKO's HLT-700U Multipurpose Filling & Forming Machine attached with EA-100KA Forming Machine is capable of mass producing xiao long bao that resemble hand-made products, with thin wraps and packed with soupy fillings.


Pineapple Cake

Pineapple Cake

It’s considered one of the most popular souvenirs from Taiwan; pineapple cakes are on the "must buy" list for tourists, and this single item can produce up to US$1 billion a year for the local economy. The "cake" is actually made with shortbread-like crust, stuffed with sweet and sour pineapple fillings, baked into small, dense and irresistible little treats. Many manufacturers in Taiwan have been keen on improving the recipes, upgrading ingredients from flour, type of pineapples to fats, as well as baking equipment to achieve more gourmet and higher quality products.

Pineapples are also known as "On Lai" in the local dialect (meaning good luck or prosperous), and the auspicious name made the snack a well-received festive gift item. Back in the days, pineapples were too fibrous, therefore winter melons were used as alternative filling in the pineapple cakes. Nowadays, with the new pineapple cultivars that have distinctive flavors, tastes and smoother textures, it's again used as the primary filling for these tropical fruit cakes.

Are you ready for another bite of pineapple cake, and savor the tropical and exotic flavors of Taiwan?

Read More: ANKO's SD-97W Automatic Encrusting & Forming Machine is designed to fill the shortbread dough with various different fillings, with STA-360 Automatic Stamping & Aligning Machine attached, the production line can mass produce various types of fruit cakes, including pineapple cakes.


Bubble Tea (Boba Milk Tea)

bubble tea

Read More: ANKO's GD-18B Automatic Cutting and Rounding Machine can be used to produce tapioca pearls with efficiency and consistency, producing high quality and uniformed tapioca pearls.

Last but not least, bubble tea may have been the most popular and edible beverage in the world, which was invented in Taiwan in the 1980s. Adding milk and tapioca pearls to tea drinks has created a whole new beverage category. With the chewiness and aroma from brown sugar, bubble tea is delicious, fun to eat and drink at the same time; it was even nominated as one of the best beverages in the world.

With the growing popularity of bubble tea, tapioca export market had reached an all-time high. Especially the amount of export to Japan from Taiwan had exceeded the United States. According to the data from the Bureau of Foreign Trade, the amount of tapioca export from Taiwan to Japan had increased 10 times in the first 8 months of 2019 compared to the previous year, summing up to US$100 million a year, which has the potential of US$1 billion in revenue for the overall bubble tea market.

Following the success of a few successful brands, many beverage companies have developed their own signature recipes, and have also customized their own tapioca pearls using different ingredients to create different textures, tastes and flavors, in order to create brand loyalty in the competitive beverage market.

There are many famous brands, such as ONEZO, COCO, Chatime, etc., and companies that were founded in Taiwan, and eventually branched out to the world. They have created new demands in the beverage businesses, especially amongst the younger generation of tea drinkers and boba-lovers, which can last for a while in the future.

Other than xiao long bao, pineapple cakes & bubble tea, what other classic cuisines and local snacks could be found in Taiwan? Explore now

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