New Costa Rica Campaign Hopes to Revamp Coffee Industry

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    The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – The fast pace of modern life, drinks that dissolve quickly in water and the aging of traditional coffee drinkers in Costa Rica have caused a fall in the consumption of this local drink, a situation that entrepreneurs have decided to start fighting.

    “We have noticed a trend of falling consumption in the new generations of Costa Ricans. Our consumer market is aging,” said the president of the Costa Rican Coffee Roasters, José Manuel Hernando.

    Data indicates that in recent years there has been a steady decline in domestic consumption: The 2006-2007 crop demand was 420,000 bags (46 kilos each) and for 2012-2013, it decreased to 403,752 bags.

    The domestic Costa Rican market accounts for about 20% of total annual sales.

    Hernando said the situation is “worrisome” because it affects businesses and small bean producers, and also joins other industry problems with the plague of rust fungus that has damaged crops like never before.

    For the entrepreneur, the decline in consumption among Costa Rican coffee is most noticeable in the young people who prefer other drinks have become popular such as cold tea, energy drinks, and powders that dissolve quickly in water.

    “Costa Ricans learned to drink coffee at breakfast with the whole family, but now many people have no time for breakfast because the pace of life they lead,” said Hernando.

    In order to revive coffee consumption, which for decades was the main export of Costa Rica, Chamber of Roasters has launched a local media campaign called “Viva Café”.

    “It’s a very good initiative. We want to remind consumers the advantages of drinking coffee for their health, which has been proven in scientific studies,” said Hernando.

    The campaign, which has a cost of about $100,000 and lasts from September to next March, focuses on key points, such as that coffee is natural, gives energy, is healthy and can be drunk at any time of day .

    “Coffee promotes social spaces and personal enjoyment. Some seek in drink it for vitality and action, while others prefer relaxing,” said Hernando.

    The businessman also said that, “Costa Ricans are privileged to live in a country that produces one of the world’s most renowned coffees due to its excellent quality.”

    Coffee is one of the most important agricultural products to Costa Rica. In 2012 it accounted for $411.3 million in revenue, according to data from the Ministry of Foreign Trade.

    However, for 2013 and 2014 the authorities expect a drop in production and sales due to the effects of rust fungus, which caused the fall of the fruit and leaves in most of the coffee plantations in the country.

    According to calculations by the Costa Rican Coffee Institute, the country may lose about 18% of the crop from 2013 to 2014. (EFE)

    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)

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