HCM CITY — Global demand for coffee will continue to increase for the next 30 years, but Việt Nam should focus on improving the value of its coffee to raise its profile in the international market and become the number one power in coffee, according to industry experts.

Lương Văn Tự, chairman of the Việt Nam Coffee and Cocoa Association (VICOFA), told the trade promotion and international investment conference held by his association last week, “Besides coffee beans, Việt Nam’s coffee exporters have also promoted the export of roasted and instant coffee in recent years.”

“Việt Nam has also promoted coffee consumption in the domestic market. The rapid increase in the number of coffee chains has boosted consumption to over 10 per cent of total coffee output.”

The industry has taken advantage of the free trade agreements the country has signed, including the EU-Việt Nam FTA and CPTPP, to boost exports to these large markets. 

Lê Hoàng Diệp Thảo, VICOFA deputy chairwoman, CEO of coffee brand King Coffee, and co-owner of Trung Nguyên coffee, said, “Việt Nam is facing a rare opportunity to break through and become the number one power in coffee.

“If we increase the value of the Vietnamese coffee industry, we will have a chance of achieving two important things: help 10 per cent of coffee exports turn into high-value coffee product exports and increase coffee consumption in the local market from 1.68 kg/person (in 2019) to three kilogrammes (in 2023).”

“Only when there is enough internal strength and stability in the domestic market would Vietnamese coffee have the opportunity to be treated equally and respected and Vietnamese farmers and producers get the right prices,” she said.

She spoke about her company’s model to increase the value of Vietnamese coffee.

The conference organised both offline and online attracted over 62 local and foreign businesses who spoke about solutions to increase coffee consumption in their domestic markets, experiences in developing national brands and measures to promote coffee trade.

Xiong Xiangren, president of the Asian Coffee Association and CEO of Dehong Hogood Coffee Company Ltd, said this year China’s coffee consumption was 350,000 tonnes worth 250 billion RMB (US$38.2 billion), an increase of 30 per cent from last year.

“Last year China imported 110,000 tonnes of coffee from 84 countries, with imports from Việt Nam accounting for more than 30 per cent of [it].”

Việt Nam’s exports to China included coffee beans and roasted, instant and ready to drink coffee. ACA would work with VICOFA to promote the export of Vietnamese coffee, he said. — VNS