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Ethiopian coffee taps into a growing taste among the young

China Daily | Updated: 2022-10-08 09:16
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Ethiopian coffee is enjoyed by more Chinese consumers. CHINA DAILY

ADDIS ABABA — The increasing number of consumers and the growing popularity of Ethiopia's coffee among Chinese people is propelling Ethiopia's coffee export market, officials and coffee exporters say.

"Young people in China are really fond of Ethiopian coffee, and we are witnessing growing coffee market share there and in other parts of Asia," says Adugna Debela, director general of the Ethiopian Coffee and Tea Authority.

Ethiopia exported 11,935 metric tons of coffee to China in the last Ethiopian fiscal year, which ended on July 7, worth $65.3 million, 84 percent more than in the previous year, the authority says.

The increase made China the seventh major importer of Ethiopian coffee last fiscal year. It ranked 33rd in the previous fiscal year.

Ethiopia's 300,000 tons of coffee exports during the year were worth $1.4 billion. The top five destinations were Germany, the United States, Saudi Arabia, Belgium and Japan.

China would be one of the main destinations for Ethiopian coffee because of its population size and the growing coffee drinking habits, Debela says.

"Very recently countries like China, Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates are coming to the front line, after consumers in those countries tested and proved that Ethiopian coffee is an organic one."

Amid the growing demand for Ethiopian coffee in China, a growing number of Ethiopian coffee growers and exporters are vying to penetrate the market.

Israel Degefa, chief executive officer of Kerchanshe Trading, the largest producer and exporter of coffee in Ethiopia, agrees with Debela on China's rosy prospects for Ethiopian coffee exporters.

"In general, the Chinese market is growing every year, and we are tripling our export to China both in volume of coffee and value. The demand is high, and we are preparing to grow more coffee to feed the Chinese market."

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