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Last Updated: 09. April 2019

Ranked: Countries with the Fastest Growing Coffee Culture in Western Europe

Evaluating the Shift in Coffee Culture in Western Europe

Coffee is one of the most popular drinks in the world, and as the consumption is increasing worldwide, it is developing and shaping a coffee culture in many countries.

Western Europe is the largest and the most mature coffee market. In fact, 30% of the global coffee consumption is in Europe. More specifically, Western Europe has the highest average annual consumption at approximately 6 kg per capita.

Coffee is one of the leading drinks in Western Europe, as it has become deeply ingrained in the culture and daily routine of consumers. This can be seen in the increasing number of new coffee shops, the growth of coffee shop chains, as well as the increasing number of coffee machine purchases.

However, the coffee market and consumer’s preferences are different from country to country. This is caused by the unique growth and continual shaping of each country’s coffee culture.

To explore this subject and highlight coffee trends in Western Europe, Market Inspector has conducted a study with a comprehensive scoring system based on the following metrics: average coffee consumption, average amount spent on coffee per capita, the number of coffee shops per 10,000 people, performance rankings at the world barista championship, and the value growth of retail sales of coffee.

The elements that were covered in our research are:

Legend
IndicatorRankCountry
Rank 1 1
Greece

Rank 2-5 2-5 Switzerland
Norway
Portugal
Netherlands
Rank 6-10 6-10 Finland
Austria
Italy
Ireland
Denmark
Rank 11-16 11-16 Sweden
United Kingdom
Germany
France
Belgium
Spain
Information-icon By clicking on specific countries you can see their scores in each metric

If you would like to use this map on your site, feel free to copy the code below:

<p><iframe src="https://www.google.com/maps/d/embed?mid=1CtQUOnTG02opg5_4T6f0mSLjU3zebRtS&ll=58.07048103160339,14.728693049999947&z=3" width="100%" height="480"></iframe><br><em>Created by <a href="https://www.market-inspector.co.uk/blog/2019/04/coffee-culture-western-europe" target="_blank">Market Inspector</a></em></p>

Top 3 Performing Countries

According to Market Inspector’s Coffee Culture Score Rating, the best performing countries are: Greece, Switzerland, and Norway.

Greece

Through our analysis, we found that Greece has the fastest growing coffee culture in Western Europe. Despite not having scored outstandingly in any one category, Greece delivered great, consistent results in each metric, thereby securing the number one spot in our report. Based on this, the Greek coffee culture received the highest result in scoring 0,58.

The Greek consumption of 5.3 kg per capita ranked below the average of western Europe. However, the result of this metric was the only one that did not make it to the top five list. Spending €86.58 / £73.67 annually, they are the 5th biggest coffee spender. Taking into account how much they spend on coffee, and the fact that Greece is a favourite tourist destination, there is no wonder that they have 34.3 coffee shops per 10,000 people, which is the second most in western Europe.

Coffee in Greece is getting a lot of attention -- not only consumption-wise, but also as a lifestyle. Each year, the value growth in retail coffee sales grows, up to the highest of 5.3% in 2019. Greek baristas are scoring high results on World Barista Championship, making it to 4th place on average in this international competition for the past three years.

Switzerland

The country securing the second place in our rating is Switzerland. Switzerland has a higher amount of coffee consumed, and money spent on coffee per capita in comparison to Greece.

However, when reviewing the number of coffee shops per 10 000 people, it was found that Switzerland has only 2.5 shops per 10,000 people, while in Greece there are 34.3.

In all, Switzerland has a score of 0.49, securing the 2nd spot in our study of the fastest growing coffee culture in Western Europe.

Norway

The country with the third fastest growing coffee culture in our rating is Norway, which has the highest amount of money spent on coffee per capita.

Overall, Norway performed well in many metrics, however, the country has seen a decrease in retail sales value growth of -1.9%, where the average result across other Western European countries is 4.2%. This negatively affected Norway’s overall score of 0.47, therefore ending up slightly below the second rank.

Coffee at Work

Best Performing Countries per Metric Applied

During our analysis, we found that although certain countries did not rank highly on our list of fastest-growing coffee culture in Western Europe, they did perform well in individual metrics.

We want to highlight these countries that performed well in each respective metric, which you can read below.

Highest Consumption per Capita: Finland

With a staggering 11.7 kg of coffee consumed annually, Finland is the absolute leader of this metric. To better understand how much Finland dominates, we calculated Western Europe’s annual consumption average, excluding Finland. This average is 5.8 kg, which means Finland consumes more than twice the Western European average. The second country is its neighbour Norway, with 9.9 kg consumed annually.

Highest Annual Amount Spent per Capita: Norway

Analysing the amount of money citizens spend on coffee every year, Norway is the leader in Western Europe. Norway’s annual per capita spending on coffee accounts to €144.97 / £123.47. This is also more than double the amount of the average Western European coffee spending of €64.20 / £54.99.

Biggest Number of Coffee Shops per 10,000 People: Portugal

According to our findings, Portugal is the leader when it comes to coffee shop concentration. An impressive 41.6 coffee shops per 10,000 people can be found in Portugal, which is a reflection of coffee’s significance in the country.

In Portugal, coffee is a part of a daily lifestyle and there are a lot of different cafés where people can enjoy the popular hot drink and its variations. Moreover, a certain influence is caused by the fact that Portugal has a high level of tourism, making coffee shops as a business very popular and profitable.

On top of that, Portugal’s former colony is Brazil, which is the world’s largest coffee bean producer.

Best Results at World Barista Championship: United Kingdom

A sign of fast-growing coffee culture is also about the social engagement of the country and coffee. Coffee festivals and competitions are the fundamentals of the current coffee trends and reflections of a nation’s consumer preferences.

To measure this metric, we have evaluated the rankings of the World Barista Championship organisation. and analysed the highest scores of each country for the past three years.

The United Kingdom ranked the best in this metric, thanks to the high average scores received during the last three championship seasons.

Highest Value Growth in Retail Coffee Sales: Ireland

Our analysis of this metric has revealed to us that consumer spending habits and demand for coffee in Ireland are the highest of all across Western Europe. This exceeds Europe’s average result by four times.

The performance of this metric is affected by a number of factors. We can assume that the shift from a similar tea culture, as in the United Kingdom, has a faster pace and defines Ireland’s stunning results of this metric.

Popularity of Coffee Categories in Western Europe

When analysing the trend of coffee consumption across Western Europe, Market Inspector discovered an overall tendency toward fresh coffee, and a decline in instant coffee consumption.

If you want to share this interactive chart, use the code below:

<div style="clear:both"><iframe src="https://www.market-inspector.co.uk/embed/coffee-categories-western-europe" frameborder="0" style="overflow-x: hidden; overflow-y: scroll; width: 100%;" height="500"></iframe><br /><a href="https://www.market-inspector.co.uk/blog/2019/04/coffee-culture-western-europe" target="_blank">Chart by Market Inspector</a></div>

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the dominant coffee category is still instant coffee, however, this trend has recently started to change. We can already see that Ireland’s fresh coffee market grew significantly and will soon overcome the dominant instant coffee demand.

Meanwhile, in the United Kingdom, this shift in coffee category preference began now with the present popularity of coffee houses, fast-growing fresh ground coffee pods market, and an increased demand for quality coffee.

In the Nordic countries, growing environmental concerns, as well as difficulties with recycling coffee pods, caused an increase in demand for certified and organic coffee. This caused a great growth of fresh ground coffee, as consumers are looking for a possibility to enjoy a barista-style coffee at their homes and at work.

Methodology

Market Inspector’s research aimed to uncover which western European country has the fastest growing coffee culture. To measure this growth, five metrics were identified and data relating to each was collected:

  • Average coffee consumption
  • Average amount spent on coffee per capita
  • Number of coffee shops per 10,000 people
  • Performance rankings at the world barista championship
  • Value growth of retail sales of coffee

According to Euromonitor, the largest coffee market in the world is Western Europe, and includes the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. For this reason, we used this as the scope of our research.

Metrics Used and Their Sources

For our research, we primarily used statistics from Euromonitor. This source helped us to get reliable insight into how much each western European country spends on coffee, and how much of which coffee category each country consuming.

We also analysed the number of coffee shops per 10,000 people using the data provided by the International Coffee Organization, which has been calculated by Statista.

What is more, we gathered information on each country’s ratings from World Barista Championship and analysed last three seasons to uncover the average winner.

Sources and Calculation of Data
Metric NameMetric DescriptionSource
Consumption per Capita
How many kilograms of coffee is being used per capita


Euromonitor

Amount Spent per Capita How much money was spent per capita
Euromonitor

Coffee Shops per 10,000 People
Number of Foffee Shops per 10,000 People


International Coffee Organization, Statista

World Barista Championship Average Score
Country’s Best Score at International World Barista Championship Competition for the Last 3 Years.


World Barista Championship Organization

Retail Sales % Value Growth
Euromonitor


Euromonitor

After gathering data and determining coffee trends in Western Europe, a minimum-maximum normalisation has been used to determine the overall ranking. We standardised and ranked our data based on a scale from 0 to 1. We obtained this score by using the following normalisation formula:

Scorei = (xi - min) / (max - min)

Then, we weighed each key dimension to compile the final Market Inspector score, which countries were eventually ranked by.

Dataset

You can find country's specific result to each metric below: