No 30

“My Story Shows the Ongoing Coffee Boom in China”

May, 2012


“My Story Shows the Ongoing Coffee Boom in China”

This was emphasized in the China Daily, by Zhao Hui, who has imported Colombian Specialty Coffee since 2000 for Horst Coffee, a business located in the Fengtai district of Beijing.

For much of the twentieth century the people of China ignored coffee- they regarded it as a capitalist beverage- and its consumption was widely exceeded by tea, one of the Asian flagship beverages.

However, as Zhao Hui explained to the ‘China Daily’, he developed a strong and growing relationship when he finally had the opportunity to taste a good coffee. So much so that Zhao, at age 42, is considered an ambassador of coffee as his efforts have not only focused on selling coffee, but also on offering courses, exhibitions and cupping: “In this country people rarely drink a real cup of coffee; they usually drink soluble coffee or they add too much sugar or milk”, Zhao said to China Daily. About 15,000 young coffee enthusiasts have attended his courses, according to the Chinese newspaper.

Zhao, also known as “Uncle Bean”, is convinced that it is not enough to have the best roasters and coffee makers; the secret to a great cup of coffee is 80% in the quality of the coffee bean. So Zhao spares no effort and, after visiting Colombia and meeting the producers, he has set up the necessary relationships to offer limited editions of Colombian Specialty Coffee which serve as his raw material. Thus, his guests always sample an exceptional coffee. In his facilities Zhao proudly exhibits these specialty coffee bags, as well as 11 other brands from 9 producing countries, said the China Daily.

The story of Zhao and his colleagues has been the key for the creation of the ‘China Coffee Association of Beijing’, an organization that recently reported that in the last 20 years, China has shown the fastest growing coffee consumption and currently 10 million people are involved with this industry.

Knowing that the Asian giant is at last inclined to drink coffee, the Federation anticipated this trend since 2006 and established an office in Beijing. It also made the transliteration of the Café de Colombia Logo and the Juan Valdez Brand to appeal to Chinese consumers in their own language. There are currently 59 brands of 100% Colombian coffee marketed by freeze-dried coffee producers and roasters in this growing market.



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