Despite being the second largest coffee exporter in the world, Vietnam imported one million bags of coffee in 2016/17, a report from consultancy firm Virac reveals.
The firm expects import volume to further rise to 1.06 million bags in the 2017-2018 period. Vietnam imports green coffee, roasted beans, and ready-made coffee from Brazil, the US, China, Indonesia, Laos and Cambodia.
Half of Laos’ total Arabica coffee output (30,000 tons) is sold to Vietnam every year say business sources. Several thousands of tons from Cambodia are also sold to Vietnam. Most of the coffee is processed and sold to hospitality sector to be served at hotels, restaurants and high-end shops.
An analyst noted that Vietnam has to import coffee in large quantities because of the mushrooming of café chains, from foreign owned chains to Vietnamese owned ones such as Trung Nguyen and Phuc Long.
The US Department of Agriculture, in a report released in early December, predicted that the coffee volume for Vietnam’s domestic consumption may reach 2.88 million bags in 2017-2018, an increase of 3.97 percent over the previous period.