Daily Coffee Consumption at Highest Level Since 2012

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Daily Coffee Consumption at Highest Level Since 2012

03/20/2018
coffee cup filled with coffee and surrounded by coffee beans

NEW ORLEANS — Daily coffee consumption has reached its highest level since 2012, with demand continuing to get a boost from at-home consumption and gourmet drinks, according to a survey commissioned by the National Coffee Association (NCA).

As Reuters reported, 64 percent of Americans ages 18 and above said they had a cup of coffee the previous day in 2018. That compares with 62 percent in 2017 and was roughly on par with levels last seen in 2012, NCA released during the group’s annual meeting in New Orleans.

As coffee, bottled water and tea have been major growth categories in recent years, the survey underscores a strong U.S. market for the caffeinated beverage even as demand for soda and juice continues a years-long decline.

Daily coffee consumption declined into the mid-1990s, when Americans drinking coffee on any given day fell below 50 percent, NCA presented.

Coffee is a bright spot for the global food industry, which has been facing stagnating demand for growth for other products. Ready-to-drink (RTD) products are boosting demand in the U.S., while pods and roast coffee are a growing market in Brazil.

"We see the cola industry is declining, but coffee is in the front row," Roberto Vélez, head of the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation, said in a separate presentation.

Among those surveyed, at-home preparation continues to dominate demand, as 79 percent of respondents say they had a cup of coffee at home the previous day. Only 36 percent said they consumed coffee at cafes and other out-of-home locations.

Demand for gourmet coffee — including espresso-based beverages and RTD — was relatively steady in 2017. The segment continued to get a boost from younger drinkers, with 48 percent of millennials saying they had a cup of coffee they consider to be gourmet the day before.

"There’s been a huge shift toward gourmet in the U.S.," market consultant Michael Edwards said in a presentation, adding that gourmet represents more than half the market.

Recently, major coffee roasters have been tapping into this segment: Folgers maker JM Smucker is rolling out a new premium line later this year, and Nestle bought a majority stake in specialty chain Blue Bottle Coffee in 2017.

The survey also showed that use of smartphone apps and delivery services remains niche. Of those who drank coffee in the past week, 9 percent said they had ordered it through an app.

The NCA survey asked about 3,000 respondents what they drank yesterday at different times of day.

Based in New York, the National Coffee Association was founded in 1911, making it one of the oldest trade associations in the nation.