How Coffee is Evolving in Asia

Asian Culture & Coffee

Asian markets have traditionally been dominated by tea as opposed to coffee, but in recent years the tasty dark beans have begun making a larger impression on the masses. Countries such as Japan, South Korea, and China have begun developing thriving coffee markets, with Japan rapidly becoming one of the biggest consumers of coffee beans on the planet. Other Asian countries such as Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand who, 20 years ago had no coffee market whatsoever, are also starting to come onboard, with exports trickling in from industry suppliers across the world.

With increased demand, coffee shops have begun to spring up in each of these nations, and the normalization of consumption has aided significantly in the industries growth.



Personal Brewing on the Rise

As coffee shops continue to expand, the demand for personal coffee machines for use in the home has also risen.

Sites likeĀ have seen a massive spike in consumers from Asian countries, and Asian students living in the US have increasingly brought back grounds to their home countries, quickly increasing public interest in the product.

While green tea still accounts for the majority of the hot beverage market (particularly for older generations), younger consumers have been slowly shifting the needle towards espresso and other coffee-based drinks that are seen almost as a status symbol.

Tea is Still Dominant in the Market

Tea is still a very prominent force in the market however, with the average person in China consuming 400 cups each year alone. This is somewhat unsurprising, as tea has been a major part of Asian culture for hundreds of years. It is an inexpensive, caffeinated, and can come in a multitude of flavors, which makes it perfect for everyone from blue collar workers to upper class business men and women. In fact, some teas actually contain more caffeine than coffee, which still makes it the beverage of choice for those looking for that morning pick-me-up.

What do the trends say?

Unfortunately for tea, coffee is one of the top five fastest growing markets in Asian countries, with the number of new coffee products in Asia rising by a staggering 95% between 2011 and 2016. If this trend continues, coffee could easily take over tea as the number one consumed beverage in the Eastern Hemisphere by the end of 2018.