Millennial's Favorite Drink

You see them everywhere, with manicured beards, tribal tattoos and vintage garb, Hipsters have become a symbol of the millennial. A generation that considers themselves cultural connoisseurs, foodies, fashionistas, they are more open to experiences than any generation before them and more conscious of where their products are coming from. They prioritise experiences and quality over price and most importantly they were raised to be consumers with disposable income.

Health consciousness has turned them away from energy drinks and brought them back to the roots, a good old cup’a joe. About 44% of the United States coffee demand comes from millennials, but being novelty seekers they wish to experience the best beans, the most unique flavours and textures the world has to offer. This mindset has put the specialty coffee market on the rise, so much so that, “U.S., specialty coffee has increased its market share from 1% to 20% in the last 25 years.” In the past eight years coffee consumption in 18-39 year olds has increased with an average of 11%. Café culture is no longer just a European status symbol, it’s a fashionable expectation.

“Specialty”, “gourmet”, “premium” coffees, what’s the difference? While gourmet and premium coffees can be a misleading marketing trick, “specialty” coffee is standardised. According to the SCA, the specialty coffee association, it’s Arabica beans whose green seeds score at least 80/100 points on a graded scale and have little to no defects. They get their unique flavour profiles from the soil compositions in which they are grown.

While the standards of the SCA apply mainly to the growing and picking process, to uphold the rich flavours of the specialty coffees, care must be taken to retain the bean quality at every step of the way, from producer to barista. With such fast advances on the consumer side, advances in the trading and processing process are needed to keep up. Companies like Avenews GT, that connect directly between buyers and producers, increase the value of the beans for the final consumer by not only keeping the quality of the beans, but also making them traceable. The final bearded barista and cultured customer can know their coffee’s authentic story.

What does this mean for buyers and producers? China, Panama, Kenya, Senegal and the United States are considered the highest potential ma