Coffee lands, coffee distributors, roasters, resellers: who are the main players in the coffee industry


We all have there, a little too stressed on a busy working day. In such days, more often than not, our habit is to find some solace in a cup of freshly brewed coffee.

But, ever wondered what went into bringing the coffee beans to your cup? Away from the limelight, there is an elaborate process in place for coffee beans to grow in the fields and then distributed all over the world to consume.

There are a few different stages

There are a few different stages in the process, as well as a few key players playing a major role in the industry.
So, with the demands for coffee projected to rise around 5% by 2025, let’s find out the main players who would be driving to meet it.

Coffee Lands

Of course, the coffee lands are the most fundamental players in the coffee industry. Not every climatic condition or soil is suitable for coffee trees to grow, helping the strategically located landowners to have a greater influence in the supply chain. There is also the distinction between different species of coffees such as Arabica and Robusta; as different lands in different locations are good for different species.
It is in the lands, where coffee trees are planted, harvested, and processed; before it’s prepared for export.

Coffee Distributors

Coffee is the most traded agricultural commodity in the world, and thus, requires a huge effort from the distributors - the ones who handle the export and import of green coffee.
Before exporting, however, the beans need to be sorted based on shapes and looks. They are then stored in jute or sisal bags to be transported. Once they arrive, it’s the importer's responsibility to clear it from customs. The green beans are then inspected visually. It then goes a through a three-step taste tasting or cupping process, before being prepared to be shipped to the roasters.

Coffee Roasters

It’s the highly-temperate, chemical process of roasting that turns green coffee into the dark brown beans we are so used to seeing. This process involves a few different stages, with each steps having a critical influence over the flavours, aftertastes and the body of the coffee. Once roasting is done, the beans are then cooled and blended with different strength combinations and flavours. After that, it gets prepared and packaged for the resellers.

Coffee Resellers

Coffees are sold both as whole beans, ground beans, and capsule. Therefore, different roasters distribute their products differently. Some large roasters distribute it through wholesale channels. Other resellers include restaurants, café, hotels, airports, supermarkets, retailers, etc.; who then sell the beans or coffee-based beverages to the end consumers.

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