October 5, 2016

East Asia develops a taste for Finnish long drink

The drink, known as lonkero, is a mix of gin and grapefruit soda.
The drink, known as lonkero, is a mix of gin and grapefruit soda.

Original Long Drink by the Finnish beverage company Hartwall is taking steps towards establishing its place on shop shelves in the Far East.

According to news reported by Markkinointi & Mainonta, the mixed drink is available in over 2 000 shops in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Matti Ristola, director of export and overseas markets, tells the paper that all initial orders have led to new ones.

Ristola does not disclose the exact export numbers for the drink, known in Finland as lonkero. He points out that the volumes so far have not been extensive, but expectations for next year are far higher.

Markets around the globe are gradually getting their hands on Hartwall’s Original Long Drink, with the Finnish company signing distribution agreements in Sweden, the Netherlands and Belgium last year. The beverage is a mix of gin and grapefruit soda, and was invented for the Helsinki Olympics in 1952.

Lonkero’s journey to Asia sped up earlier this year, when Hartwall took part in Foodex trade show in Tokyo as part of the Food from Finland delegation.

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