Zealong tea set to take off

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Millions of Japanese commuters will soon be sipping on Kiwi tea, featured in the fourth busiest railway station in the world.

Waikato tea plantation, Zealong, has successfully signed a deal with West Japan Railway Company to establish a “luxurious” tea and cheesecake store in the Osaka Train Station.

Zealong Tea Estate CEO, Gigi Crawford, said this was the first time a business outside of Japan has been allowed a store in the Osaka Station.

The project, years in the making, was in danger of falling through due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the JR West CEO Takeshi Kitani appreciated all the hard work Zealong had put into the brand, the quality of the tea and the project.

“He wanted us to carry on, but asked that the opening date be pushed back a year or two. We are extremely lucky,” Crawford said.

Osaka Station is one of the busiest in Japan, with more than 2.3 million passengers passing through daily.

The Zealong store will be positioned in a prime location near one of the main entrances, offering passengers the unique opportunity to purchase takeaway cheese cake and New Zealand tea on their daily commute.

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