The Philippine Embassy in Japan has launched a campaign to help its specialty coffee farmers and entrepreneurs promote their products in the Japanese market
The branded coffee shop market in Japan projected to exceed 9,100 outlets by 2025 | Photo credit: Philippine Embassy
The Commercial Section of the Philippine Embassy in Japan has launched a campaign to support the growth of Philippine specialty coffee in the Japanese market.
Three embassy-organised events have been held in June, including a coffee tasting day with representatives from UCC, Starbucks Japan, coffee shop franchise Doutor, and Japanese food business Ajinomoto, with the Philippine Embassy aiming to promote Philippine specialty coffee in Japan as a niche gourmet product.
The events focused on three Philippine specialty coffee varieties: Barako from Southern Luzon and Benguet Peaberry Coffee from the Cordillera highlands in the North, and Davao del Sur Peaberry from Mount Apo in the South.
Talks are underway between Japanese importers and Philippine coffee exporters for trial orders ranging from 1,000kg of green beans to 25kg of roasted specialty beans. If the trial orders are successful Japanese importers say they will commit to repeat orders in larger quantities.
The embassy's Commercial Counsellor Dita Angara-Mathay said that the goal is to advance Philippine specialty coffee in Japan and ‘is confident a few Japanese coffee shops will feature it among their small-lot coffee lines’.
“We are proud of our specialty coffee. As an archipelagic nation with over 7,000 islands, our diverse topography and microclimates have allowed us to grow and enjoy a wide spectrum of coffee varieties. We just need to ensure that public sector agencies and business work hand-in-hand with farmer communities to maintain consistency in quality and fill gaps in the coffee ecosystem such us needed upgrades in infrastructure, harvesting and processing,” said Ambassador Jose C. Laurel V.
The Philippines Government recently held the first ever Manila Coffee Festival, attracting 5,000 coffee aficionados, growers and distributors to Fort Santiago, Intramuros and featuring more than 30 coffee exhibitors.
East Asia’s branded coffee shop market proved remarkably resilient in the face of severe Covid-19 disruption, with World Coffee Portal data finding that the region’s three largest markets, South Korea, China and Japan, achieved outlet growth of 8.3%, 2.9%, and 2.3% in 2020 respectively.
Japan is one of the largest coffee consuming countries in the world, with a well-established branded specialty coffee shop market. In 2021, the total Japanese branded coffee shop market was estimated at more than 7,900 outlets and was projected to exceed 9,100 outlets by 2025, presenting an opportune market for Philippine specialty coffee.