5 reasons why Europe is great for coffee exporters

Europe is the world’s largest coffee market, consuming about one-third of the world's coffee. Quality, sustainability and certification are becoming more and more important in the European market. This development provides many ways for coffee exporters to enter the European market. Here are 5 reasons why Europe is a great destination for coffee exporters in producing countries.

1.    Europe is the world's largest coffee market

Europeans drink a lot of coffee. In 2022, the total amount of coffee consumed in Europe was 55,000 bags, so 31% of the coffee in the world. Almost 95% of the imported coffee was green coffee, and almost all coffee shipped from outside Europe came directly from producing countries. 

2.    Europe is a great market for speciality coffee

European importers buy much coffee for the mainstream market, but the high-end market is also growing. Europe has the highest demand for speciality coffee globally, with a 46% global market share. Speciality coffee drinkers care about the story behind the coffee and are willing to pay more for high-quality coffee. The number of coffee bars, small roasters and local brands is growing. This growth may also result in more interest in buying green coffee directly from producers and telling consumers your story.

3.    Europe is the world leader in certified coffee

Europe is the most important market for certified coffee in the world. The largest markets for Rainforest Alliance (UTZ) coffee are:

  • France;
  • Germany;
  • the Netherlands;
  • Sweden; and 
  • the United Kingdom.

For Fairtrade-certified coffee, the key markets are:

  • Germany;
  • Switzerland; and
  • the United Kingdom.

The largest markets for organic coffee are:

  • France;
  • Germany; and 
  • Italy. 

Focusing on these countries can help you find a market for your certified coffees. 

4.    Germany is an important entry point into Europe's coffee market

Germany is Europe's largest green coffee importer. For most of their imports, there is a direct link with exporters. 94% of German imports came from producing countries. Germany also has Europe's second-largest roasting industry. German coffee roasters roast beans for the domestic market and exports within Europe, which makes this country a vital entry point for its local market and the rest of Europe. 

5.    The European coffee market value will likely keep growing

Europeans' demand for coffee might change in the future, and they might be willing to pay more. So, the value of the coffee market will keep growing. More coffee shops couldopen, and demand for premium and speciality coffee will also probably keep growing. 

Learn more

These 5 reasons make Europe a great destination to sell coffee, now and in the future. Read our study What is the demand for coffee on the European market to learn more.

Ruben Bergsma from Long Run Sustainability wrote this news article for CBI.

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