The International Coffee Organization is considering an update to its guide to promote consumption.
At the 17th meeting of the ICO’s Promotion and Market Development Committee in March 2019, a number of presentations focussed on increasing consumption.
Ana Sierra – owner and Head of Integrative Marketing – gave a presentation on experience and lessons learned from Colombia Toma Café, the Colombian Coffee Consumption Programme that saw a coalition funded by the National Coffee Growers Federation of Colombia, together with Nestlé, Colcafé, Casa Luker, Café OMA, Café Diamante and 25 other roasters of different sizes, boost the coffee market in Colombia, which grew from 36.1% in volume from 2009 to 2015.
The reason for this, according to Ms Sierra, was ‘integrated marketing’ across the value chain. This was a collaborative process of innovative marketing and design, involving a network of allies to maximize resources and reach to support sustainable growth.
She stressed the importance of promoting coffee consumption, particularly at a time of crisis, such as today’s situation of low coffee prices. Enormous potential exists – particularly in emerging such as Africa – she said.
Members also received a presentation from Carlos Brando, in his capacity as Director of P & A Marketing, on his experience of developing and using the ICO Step-by-Step Guide to Promote Coffee Consumption in Producing Countries.
Originally launched in 2004, the Guide was based on promoting consumption case studies from different counties, both positive and negative. Since then, the Guide has gone on to inspire and provide the methodologies for programmes in several countries, including India (2006), Mexico (2006), Indonesia (2006), El Salvador (2007), Costa Rica (2008/09) and Colombia (2010/16).
Mr Brando recommended that the Step-by-Guide be updated, not only to incorporate both the positive and negative experiences of the above programmes, but also the fact that the world and coffee sector had changed significantly.
It is now a digital world, he noted, with changes in the coffee market, coffee preparation methods and demography in terms of population, income and age.
Other trends and opportunities also existed, such as countries where consumption was growing without promoting consumption programmes (such as China, Eastern Europe, Indonesia, the Russian Federation, the US and Vietnam) and consumers were better informed demanding higher quality and the importance of origins and sustainability.
All these factors needed to be analysed to inform a new Guide, at the same time as recognizing that these changes were happening in different ways in different countries.