Bad Rep Is Killing The Taiwan Coffee Industry
The density of coffee drinks retailers is substantially horrific in Taiwan. When I say coffee drinks retailers, it's not limited to the roasters, coffee shops or cafes but also including any form of retailers sells coffee. After fingertip searching the marketplace extensively, I am jaw-dropping about the numbers of the various type of business selling coffee from bookstore to boutique and barber shop, to Grass Jelly Herbal Tea place. Trust me. You just can't imagine or associate some odd places would too sell coffee. Unbelievably, any "mom-and-pop" can start their own coffee business thru simply setting up a boiling pot, a Chemex and a grinder. And I can practically say "Coffee is selling in every corner you go in Taiwan." As a result, this creates an explosive problem - Profitability. It consequently caused a high turnover rate in the coffee retail, and furthermore, construct a hostile business environment to any quality roaster, preventing them able to charge a fair price to continue providing quality products and services to consumers. This situation is not only impacting the retail but the distribution, and giving the opportunity for a few distributors to monopolize the supply chain, due to the independent roasters ain't able to expand their business landscape to gaining stronger purchasing/negotiation power. Some experienced roasters formed the alliance to do group purchasing in reducing operation cost, but many don't have that luxury. The worst is you can call yourself a coffee roaster as long as your store has a home coffee roasting machine, even though you may have zero experience. Not to mention, the roasting machine in many coffee roasters are operating in an unsuitable environment. In this market condition, how can consumers learn to determine a cup of quality espresso or coffee? Not really. Definitely, a market consolidation required for the best of the coffee industry in Taiwan.
1. This cafe has a home coffee roasting machine set up at the opening corner.
2. This Tofu Pudding Store hung a red banner "Buy Coffee, Gets Free Cake" to promote the grand opening.
3. This Grass Jelly Store features a "New Listing: Grass Jelly Latte" banner.
4. This creative studio named "Florist Coffee" offers expresso and coffee.
5. Three different coffee places open side by side: The "Believer" is a barbershop but also a coffee shop, and on the top of the store operates another coffee shop. Next to it is yet another cafe.
6. Two Coffee Chain Stores (Ikari and Louisa) operates side by side to compete.
7. The City Cafe, a coffee brand operated by the 7-11 Convenince Store, offers Single Origin coffee (Buy 2nd Cup with 30% Off).
8. It's very common to see Pop-up stands in the spectrum selling coffee and equipments.
9. Coffee selling on a Tricycle or Motorbike can often be spotted in the marketplace.
10. A coffee roasters offers retailing and wholesaling.
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