February 01, 2023 10:14
Imports of coffee beans hit an all-time high last year, in the latest sign of Koreans' unwavering love for the caffeinated drink.
Korea imported a record US$1.34 billion worth of coffee beans in 2022, up 42.4 percent compared to 2021, the Korea Customs Service said on Tuesday. It is double the amount of coffee imported in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic.
KCS said, "Not even the pandemic has been able to dampen coffee consumption here. Rather, it appears to have grown greatly after lockdown was lifted in April last year."
International coffee bean prices also rose due to supply disruptions and a decline in output, it added. The price of Arabica coffee stood at US$4,728 per ton last year, twice as high as in 2019.
Brazil was the biggest exporter of green coffee beans to Korea with shipments totaling $228 million, followed by Colombia ($194.2 million) and Ethiopia ($116 million).
Most roasted coffee beans were imported from the U.S. with $159 million, followed by Switzerland ($125 million) and Italy ($47.2 million).
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