Creating a product that appeals to Chinese cultural and national sensitivities has been a relatively popular branding strategy of late. Which is why when Oreo launched a collab with The Palace Museum (you might know it as The Forbidden City) last Friday, we weren’t surprised.
What surprised us though, was the six limited edition flavours that were unveiled. While red bean cake, lychee rose cake, green tea cake and vintage haw flavoured Oreos sound like they might do well dunked in a glass of milk, we’re not too sure about its Chaoshan-style BBQ pork pastry and spicy pepper pastry flavours.
We haven’t seen it at any of the supermarkets we popped into so far, but they are now available on Oreo’s Tmall store (or search ‘奥利奥故宫’). For 199RMB, you can get a limited edition box set that includes 24 packets of these six flavours (that is, four packets each), a tea set and a seal chop (pictured below) with five different, and randomly chosen stamps. Some of the stamp designs include the outline of an Oreo cookie, ‘朕的心意’ ('Emperor's well wishes’) and our favourite and most useful we believe, 朕知道了 (‘I, the emperor, know’). But you’re just in it for the novelty factor, trial packs of the six flavours retail for 22.90RMB.
Oreo is just the latest to launch these limited China-specific collabs. Another notable limited edition product flying off Tmall's virtual shelves is the White Rabbit Milk Candy's series of toiletries (search '气味图书馆大白兔') including body lotion (75RMB), shower cream (65RMB), hand cream (30RMB) and perfume (245RMB).
Photo: White Rabbit/Tmall
Chinese alcopop brand Rio has also partnered with Hero – a traditional Chinese fountain pen company – and released cocktails in ink bottles (69RMB).
Photo: Rio X Hero/Tmall
We haven’t tried any of it, and some we might not want to, but what we do know is that they’ll certainly up your game when it comes to bringing home unique souvenirs this summer.