Europe – the cradle of coffee culture. Ever since coffee was brought to the continent from Africa in the 17th century, the beverage fostered the blossoming of new cultures, at coffee houses in Britain and bars in Italy. These classic traditions have since been elevated to new heights in the form of cutting-edge specialty coffee cultures across Europe, most notably in the Nordic countries. European roasters’ relationships with coffee producers and their dedication to sustainability continue to set an example for roasters worldwide.
Dutch merchants are said to be the first to import coffee from Africa and spread it to Indonesia, and to Central and South America through France. With such a historical background, coffee has made its way into the daily lives of people in the Netherlands. Today, the country’s coffee consumption per capita ranks fifth in the world. Many coffee businesses here dedicate themselves to sustainable and ethical practices, providing a fertile ground for specialty coffee culture to flourish further than in neighboring countries. The Netherlands is leading the world in this field.
Since around 2010, specialty coffee culture has begun to take root across Germany, especially in Berlin. Although the country is a relative newcomer to specialty coffee, its manufacturing prowess has had a strong influence on the global coffee scene, as evidenced by the enduring popularity of Melitta, the inventor of coffee drippers, and Probat roasters as well as Mahlkönig’s EK43, the golden standard of coffee grinders. Filter coffee, including pour-over and siphon, has long been a popular choice for Germans, a tendency shared by Japan. Perhaps because Germany is the birthplace of many great philosophers, many roasters here have their own philosophies and try to express them through coffee. This is a very interesting characteristic unique to this country.
Despite its popular image as a country of tea lovers, Britain has a long history of coffee culture. With coffee houses evolving into social gathering places since their first appearance in the mid-17th century, coffee has long been part of the Britons’ everyday lives.
Today, countless cafes dot the urban landscapes and beyond, and major chains continue to expand their footprint in the country.
When it comes to specialty coffee, large-scale roasters, especially ones built around wholesale business, have a major presence. And sustainability is among their chief concerns.
Britain is one of the coffee consuming nations that have a significant impact on origin countries.