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Tea-loving nation warms to coffee's call

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  • Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee is displayed at the China International Import Expo in Shanghai last month. [Photo/Xinhua]

    For Zhang Yalin, an auditor at an accounting company in Guomao, Beijing''''''''''''''''s upmarket central business district, grabbing a latte from a cafe in her office building marks the start of her work day.

    Zhang is one of a growing number of Chinese who have started to habitually consume the caffeinated beverage, and they are helping make the nation''''''''''''''''s market for the drink the fastest-growing in the world.

    Although most Chinese associate coffee with Western lifestyles, they are increasingly warming to it, especially in large cities like Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province. Coffee consumption in the country rose from 26,000 metric tons in 2006 to 128,000 tons in 2016.

    Wu Jiahang, who has worked in the industry for more than 20 years, said that two decades ago most Chinese did not appreciate just how delicious coffee is.

    "When I arrived in China for the first time in 2000, I brought coffee from Colombia as a gift, and people thought it had gone bad due to the sour taste," said Wu, who was born and raised in the South American country.

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    When he was appointed chief representative of the Colombian Coffee Growers'''''''''''''''' Federation for Greater China to promote coffee beans from his country, Wu said many Colombians, especially coffee growers, initially did not believe that their beans could be sold to China.

    But within years, more coffee-growing countries began to sell their beans to the country, lining up to secure a slice of the market where the growing middle class was seeking its caffeine fix.

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pubdate:2022-01-19 | postnum () | copyToClipBoard | print