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On the occasion of MilanoCaffè, Host unveils record figures of its next edition

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MILAN — The coffee scene is changing. Consumers are increasingly attracted by words such as ‘brewing’, ‘blend’, ‘specialty’ and ‘mono-origin’, and the coffee industry is following suit.

Something that has also been substantiated by the recent coffeehouse and coffee chain openings in Italy and Milan, including the new Starbucks in Piazza Cordusio, as well as by various events, including MilanoCaffè.

This great celebration of coffee, promoted under of aegis of Comunicaffè and Comunicaffè International on the occasion of the International Coffee Day, saw an exceptionally tight schedule of dedicated events in bars, museums, restaurants, roof-tops and their own establishments until 3 October.

As many as 75 entities organised a full schedule of happenings, activities and dedicated events in bars, museums, restaurants, roof-tops and their own establishments from October 1 -3.

From bean to roasting, from industrial machines to espresso-makers and finally the furnishings and entire layout of the bar, those who work in the coffee industry must contend with a fast-evolving sector.

A sector that will be back in the spotlight at the 41st edition of HostMilano (at fieramilano from 18 to 22 October 2019), the coffee-driven event that represents an unrivalled point of reference the world over, strengthened by the presence of leading companies specialised in what must always be available in any restaurant, bar or pub.


It is therefore no coincidence that the Coffee/Tea – Bar/Coffee Machines/Vending Machines – Gelato/Pastry macro-sector can currently lay claim to 34% of the total 1189 exhibitors (of these, 63% are Italian, while 37% hail from abroad, with Germany, the United States, Spain and the United Kingdom playing key roles), a percentage that makes exceeding the numbers achieved last October when SIC, the Salone Internazionale del Caffè (International Coffee Exhibition) attracted over 600 companies, look highly likely.

The event’s success is owed, amongst other things, to the full programme of scheduled activities that, as always, straddle training, entertainment and competitions; all designed to offer baristas and industry professionals a complete overview of the latest sector solutions and trends.

A sector in full growth (+2.2% expected in 2018)

The importance of Made in Italy production is emphasised by data recently released by UCIMAC pertaining to the sector that represents Professional Espresso Coffee Machine Manufacturers. Following a 4.5% increase in production in 2017, driven predominately by foreign markets, 2018 is also expected to be characterised by growth (+2.2%).

What’s more, the vending sector is also enjoying a period of growth. Today, 11% of coffee produced globally is being supplied by vending machines, with approximately 150 billion cups being distributed; Italy, with over 810 thousand machines installed, leads the way in Europe in this specific category.

In addition to the espresso, speciality coffees are gaining in popularity

It’s no longer always about the espresso. Even in Italy, the undisputed home of the strong beverage that has made the country famous the world over, a new coffee era has arrived.

This has been confirmed by the opening of a Starbucks and has been further consolidated by consumers who are increasingly interested in trying something different to the standard espresso enjoyed at the bar.

With this in mind, there is a new focus on the various different coffee subcategories, with coffee-based ginseng drinks, coffee recipes and cold creams taking a lead role, in addition to organic coffee and soy/rice/oat milk-based cappuccinos.

That said, there is a significant focus on what has been defined as the ‘fourth wave’ of coffee, which has now made its way from the United States to Italy.

A nouvelle vague capable of attracting customers who seek more prestigious mono-origin varieties and more prized speciality coffees, as well as those who appreciate the subtleties of diverse roasting techniques and the various preparation methods.

This is exactly what visitors will see at HostMilano, where multi-national companies and small, local roasters are showcased side by side and where the most classic of proposals are accompanied by all the new ‘gourmet’ coffee trends. Let’s take a look at some more recent examples:  Nitro Cold Brew, originating in the United States and available in Europe for a number of years now, is already offered by large coffee chains. Not to mention the return of coffee in the preparation of cocktails; a relationship between coffee and mixology that has enabled us to re-discover great classics such as Coffee Negroni or the Martini Espresso, prepared using a vast range of blends and mono-origin varieties.

An all-encompassing overview of the coffee machine sector at HostMilano

Coffee machines and equipment for professionals also feature amidst the novelties on display at Host, proposed by the sector’s leading companies. If innovation in the coffee machine sector is increasingly focusing on the user/barista who seeks to personalise the coffee served as much as possible (for this, the machines must be able to quickly and simply vary the drink’s transformation parameters), the future of speciality coffee lies in a focus on key concepts such as design, ergonomics, ease of use, energy efficiency and, obviously, a premium-quality product.

There will also be a focus on technology, with a growing presence of Internet of Things solutions; for example, in the vending machine sector, where the most interesting market revolves around ‘smart’ machines that are hyper-connected.

The future, however, will be characterised by green solutions. After years of difficult to recycle or entirely non-recyclable plastic and aluminium capsules, compostable or biodegradable solutions are being developed in the name of total environmental sustainability.

Coffee competitions are back

Performances, seminars, workshops, tastings and tasting lessons with some of today’s key trending speakers and baristas, alongside international competitions. In one word, an all-encompassing overview of the coffee culture; a comprehensive panorama at HostMilano which, through an extensive schedule of events, will be made available to baristas and sector professionals to further their knowledge and understanding of a product that is evolving at such a fast pace.

The 6th edition of the Italian Coffee-Making Grand Prix, organised by AICAF (Italian Academy of Coffee Masters) and, for the finals, supported by ALTOGA (19 and 20 October 2019) is one event not to be missed.

The aim, as in the previous edition, is to promote the work of baristas in coffeehouses as well as the espresso-based products both nationally and internationally. Over the course of the competition, the contestants will have to prepare two cappuccinos, two espresso coffees and two coffee-based chilled drinks to be served simultaneously to the judging panel; before doing so, they will nonetheless have to set up their work stations and disassemble them following service according to time slots allocated by the judges.

This will be followed, on 21 October 2019, by the World Lags Championship, which will see the very best latte art baristas compete in the highest categories (green – red – black), with the competitors being selected from various different countries worldwide.

Smart Label

Promoted by Host-Fiera Milano in collaboration with and sponsored by ADI (Italian Association for Industrial Design), SMART Label, the award dedicated to innovation in the professional hospitality industry, will also be returning to the event. An appointment that once again demonstrates how HostMilano has become the occasion to discover the secrets to a successful bar: from raw materials to semi-finished products, from machines to equipment, from furnishings to tableware. It is this increasingly close relationship between technology and hospitality and the ability to identify future trends that SMART Label intends to acknowledge. The numbers speak of 497 candidacies accumulated over the past three editions, 156 companies awarded the SMART Label, more than 20 special recognitions with the Innovation SMART Label, and the same number of products marking significant milestones in a company’s sector of reference.

The Bar/Coffee industry companies already registered to take part in the 2019 edition of HostMilano include:

Althaus Tea – Hanseatic Tea Export Gmbh, Aromat Niederlassung Hamburg Der Dek Deutsche Extrakt Kaffee Gmbh, Astoria, Bianchi Industry, Bunn-o-Matic Corporation, Cafento S.l., Cafes Novell, Caffe’ Carraro, Caffe’ Mauro, Carimali, Covim, Cup & Saucer, Danesi Caffè, Dical Lollo Caffè, Diemme Caffè, Eversys Ag, Evoca Group, Flo, Florapharm Pflanzliche Naturprodukte Gmbh, Franke Kaffeemaschinen Ag, Gruppo Cimbali, Hausbrandt, Julius Meinl Industrieholding Gmbh, Kimbo, La Marzocco, La Spaziale, Le Piantagioni Del Caffè, Marco Beverage Systems Ltd, Rancilio Group, Rex-Royal Ag, Simonelli Group, Thermoplan Ag, Torrefazione Monforte, UCC Europe, Vergnano Caffè, Wega Macchine Per Caffè.

All updates are available at:, @HostMilano, #Host2019.


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