Some people enjoy waking up early and brewing the perfect cup of coffee before they leave for work. Others prefer lying in bed a little bit longer and grabbing a coffee-to-go during their morning commute. Coffee-to-go has grown in popularity across the globe in recent years, though the amount people drink still depends heavily on their country of residence. In Spain and Italy, it only accounts for three percent of coffee orders while in Japan, it accounts for nearly half.
Italians are known to be laid back when it comes to coffee and they are more likely to enjoy their espresso or cappuccino at their local cafe/bar than on the go. Is this all set to change? Earlier in the year, former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced that the chain has plans to open its first location in Milan next year. Whether the company manages to change Italian attitudes to coffee drinking remains to be seen. It will have a tough task competing with an estimated 150,000 coffee bars in Italy.
Starbucks certainly doesn’t have any difficulties selling coffee-to-go in North America where it accounts for 45 percent of all US and 43 percent of all Canadian coffee orders. It has also established itself in traditionaltea drinking nations like the UK and China, though it still has a lot of work to do to match its strongest markets. It tends to be popular in countries with a more hectic lifestyle and struggles where there’s a laid-back atmosphere. It will be interesting to observe Starbucks’ entry into the Italian market next year and whether it manages to transform attitudes in one of the most serious coffee-drinking nations worldwide.