Terry Gou (郭台銘), the founder of the electronic manufacturing giant Foxconn, more commonly known by English speakers as the Taiwanese businessman who met with Donald Trump, promised on Tuesday to expand Yifang Fruit Tea (一芳水果茶), a famous and controversial tea chain to the world and even suggested to buy Trump a cup.
Gou was rallying for two local People First Party (PFP) legislative candidates in Taichung when he stopped by the fruit tea store. He signed on a side of the wooden doorframe on the storefront and wrote “Yifang Fruit Tea, we support you, the forever loyal supporters of the Republic of China” in Mandarin.
Yifang Fruit Tea was boycotted for months last year, when the company openly supported China’s One Country Two System policy and denounced what it called “a violent strike” in a Weibo post during the island’s anti-extradition law protests.
The brand’s Taiwan and Hong Kong headquarters later issued statements disowning the post. One franchise in Taipei posted on Facebook that “We don’t agree with the post written by the Hong Kong outlets. We disagree with the ‘one country, two systems’ policy and believe that all men are entitled to freedom and democracy”. But boycotts had already begun.
Yifang Fruit Tea CEO Ko Tze-kang (柯梓凱) told local news reporters on Tuesday that he’s grateful to Gou because the Gou had called and encouraged him during the tough times.
With factories located in sixteen countries around the world, Gou promised to bring Yifang wherever the company goes. “Where there’s a factory, there’s Yifang,” Gou said. The chain currently has more than 15 stores in the U.S.
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