Coffee and tea consumption in the Arab World has more than tripled over the last decade with the UAE registering an 85 per cent increase during the last three years alone, according to the latest coffee statistics from the International Coffee Organization (ICO).
Last year, the world consumed more than eight million metric tons of coffee - that's 2.4 per cent more than the previous year. ICO said, on a global scale, about 1.4 billion cups of coffee are poured a day.
Jose Settee, Head of Operations at the ICO, said: “It's that new consumers are being turned onto the bean. Even when times are hard, people still drink coffee. And the growth in coffee consumption these days occurs much more in emerging markets, which are bearing up much better under this economic turbulence than in the developed world.”
The UAE has been the fastest growing market by volume for coffee in the world with coffee volume sales expected to register an 80 per cent growth from 2009-2014, or a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 12 percent year on year over the same period. The UAE has likewise been a key tea trading partner, with nearly 18,000 tons of tea re-exports in 2010-2011 alone.
The UAE serves as an ideal host of the 2012 International Coffee & Tea Festival as it maintains the highest average consumption of coffee and tea beverages in the region. With a per capita consumption of 3.5 kilograms each year, UAE residents drink nearly twice as much coffee as people in any other GCC country, while tea consumption in the country has likewise achieved a robust growth rate of 47 per cent. Tea drinking habits in the UAE and across the region have also evolved over the years with the introduction of a much wider variety of teas, including new tea blends that combine more than one type of premium tea and the discovery of the health benefits of tea for people suffering from cancer, heart disease, diabetes, weight problems, cholesterol and other illnesses.
Complementing the evolving market trends, the International Coffee & Tea Festival, will include a B2B Trade Show and a concurrent B2C section to cater to all stakeholders of the coffee and tea industry. The B2B Trade Show will gather international suppliers who will be sourcing regional partners as well as businesses looking at growing their distribution network in the region. The B2C section, titled ‘The Café Exchange’ will attract retailers, distributors and coffee shops looking to leverage the Festival’s expansive market reach to generate optimum brand exposure and sell directly to consumers.