CNA and Invest SP analyze the Chinese market for Brazilian coffee


“We are the largest producers and exporters of green and instant coffee in the world. For every 10 cups consumed, 3.8 come from Brazil.”

CNA and Invest SP analyze the Chinese market for Brazilian coffee

Brasilia (Oct. 20, 2020) – The Brazilian Confederation of Agriculture and Livestock (CNA) and representatives from Invest SP in China met on October 20th in an online forum to analyze the Chinese market for Brazilian coffee.

Camila Sande, the Export coordinator for CNA, led the discussions and talked about the study prepared in a partnership by the two entities. The analyses illustrate general characteristics regarding the size of the Chinese coffee market, the primary countries that supply the bean and opportunities for Brazilian producers to become involved in the market.

“China is a challenging market. Getting agricultural products onto the shelves of the Asian country requires a lot of analysis, planning and solid partnerships. The whole idea of the study is to show an overview of this market to the members of the Agro.Br Project,” Sande stated.

The Agro.Br project is an agreement between CNA and Apex-Brasil focused on making Brazilian agribusiness more international. The initiative provides assistance to entrepreneurs in the sector by increasing the presence of small and medium producers in foreign trade while diversifying the Brazilian export list.

During the online meeting, Fernando Velloso – a Market Intelligence analyst at Invest SP in China – stated that, by the end of 2020, the Asian country will be one of the few economies to post a growth. “The Chinese economy is in full swing. From July to September, it grew by almost 5% more than in the same period of 2019. Even under the context of the pandemic, the import and export levels are higher than last year.”

Velloso also described the key results of the study by CNA and Invest SP, such as field research in Shanghai supermarkets and wholesalers. “We gathered information from 300 coffee labels in traditional sales channels and e-commerce. Nearly half of the products were powdered, soluble or instant, and the vast majority was the ‘two in one’ type of coffee with milk.”

The analyst noted that the survey indicated widespread popularity of dissolvable and instant coffee powder among consumers because of how easy it is to prepare and because there are many hot water supply points in China due to the custom of consuming tea.

“Instant coffee is the primary type of product consumed by the Chinese. But there are a number of challenges to entering this market because consumption per capita is still quite low. The Chinese drink 4-5 cups on average per year. Compared with Japan, which consumes about 300 cups per year, the Chinese market also represents a great growth potential” Fernando Velloso stated.
CNA’s technical advisor, Raquel Miranda, was also invited to the debate and spoke about Brazil’s potential in coffee farming. “We are the largest producers and exporters of green and instant coffee in the world. For every 10 cups consumed, 3.8 come from Brazil.”

She believes that instant coffee is the gateway to burgeoning coffee markets like China due to the ease of preparation. “Brazil has enough to supply any market. But producers have to work hard to make sure that the bean quality from the harvest to post-harvest is maintained to assure equal taste and visual characteristics.”

During her presentation, the CNA representative expounded on the importance of Technical and Managerial Assistance (AT&G) offered by the National Rural Learning Service (Senar) to train coffee farmers and help them improve the standards of quality for agricultural products.

“We need to clearly state the value of small producers to our mature and new markets. 80% of the producers in Brazilian coffee farming are small scale with less than 50 hectares of area.” When it comes to the Chinese market, Raquel believes that the challenge lies in providing suitable and quality products along with effective marketing.

Harvest Coffee – CNA released the Harvest Coffee (Safra Cafeeira) survey to gather information on the 2020-2021 harvest and invites farmers to participate. The questionnaire will be available until December 19th, and the results will be announced in early 2021. Click here to read the study on the Chinese market for coffee (in Portuguese).

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