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Promoting coffee consumption and developing markets for all types of coffee can make an important contribution to achieving a balanced and more sustainable world coffee economy.
Established markets in North America, Europe and Japan account for almost 53% of world coffee consumption. ICO producing countries account for a further 30% and emerging markets consume the 9%. The remainder 8% is consumed in other importing non-members.
Per capita consumption varies considerably from one country to another. There is thus considerable potential for increasing global consumption: three ICO producing countries alone (India, Indonesia and Mexico) have a combined population of 1.5 billion, but consume just five million 60-kg bags of coffee a year.
The ICO produces regular reports and studies on global consumption trends to guide strategic actions in this field and has developed several valuable initiatives.
Step-by-step Guide to promote coffee consumption: This Guide builds upon the experience of Brazil, where internal consumption has more than doubled since the 1980s.
It provides practical guidelines to increase demand for coffee and has served as a catalyst for investments of over US$30 million in domestic consumption programmes. Countries using the Guide have developed a range of tools to attract consumers, from comic books and theatre groups, to radio and coffee vans.
ICO CoffeeClub: In 2008, the ICO launched ICO CoffeeClub, a collaborative web-based community with the aim of promoting coffee worldwide.
The ICO CoffeeClub acts as a source of information and resources such as videos, presentations, discussion communities and news and is visited by users from over 150 countries. It is also a valuable facility for problem-solving, developing connections and transacting business.
Coffee and health
A constraint for increasing coffee consumption is the linking of coffee with fears about its effects on health by part of the population. However there is now significant scientific information available on positive health effects of coffee drinking.
The newly launched website on “Coffee and health,” from the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC) provides balanced, up-to date scientific information on coffee, caffeine and health to health professionals, academics and specialist health media. The website features three dedicated information centres, tailored to the specific needs of healthcare practitioners such as doctors, nurses and dieticians, the academic and research community, as well as specialist health media. The site includes fully-referenced, balanced information, based on the latest scientific research, as well as additional background data sourced from relevant authoritative bodies on a range of health topics including cardiovascular health, fluid balance, liver function, pregnancy, sports performance and type 2 diabetes.
The Healthcare Professions – Coffee Education Programme (HCP-CEP) is aimed at medical and healthcare professional audiences such as general practitioners, nurses, nutritionists and healthcare media. It is intended to dispel misinformation and myths that associate drinking coffee with poor health or specific diseases, and to promote balanced scientific messages in relation to health effects of moderate coffee consumption.
Materials include newsletters, brochures and websites, as well as attendance at key scientific, medical and health seminars and conferences.