Germany faces coffee crisis: World's 2nd largest importer at risk

Positioned as the world's second-largest coffee importer after the United States, with an annual import volume of 1.1 million tons, Germany could face a coffee crisis post-2025 due to new EU regulations.

Publication: 12.03.2024 - 14:22
Germany faces coffee crisis: World's 2nd largest importer at risk
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The German coffee trade industry is concerned that these regulations could jeopardize the coffee supply in Germany and Europe. The Hamburg-based German Coffee Association has warned that coffee prices could significantly increase, stating, "We are facing a supply shortage risk in the German and European market."

Holger Preibisch, the General Manager of the Coffee Association, has called for a delay in the new regulation's implementation. He argues that millions of coffee farmers worldwide could see their livelihoods at risk if the regulation proceeds as planned.

Preibisch also expressed frustration over bureaucratic responsibilities and the difficulty of obtaining necessary information, noting that "Currently, only about 20% of farmers can meet the requirements."

Starting December 31, the EU's Deforestation-Free Products Regulation (EUDR) will mandate companies to prove that their products, including raw materials like cocoa or coffee beans and sub-products like chocolate, leather, or furniture, have not contributed to deforestation or forest degradation.

Violating this law could result in hefty fines for companies, potentially amounting to at least 4% of their annual turnover in the EU.

The European Commission has stated there is no evidence to suggest that the regulation will increase food prices. The regulation also emphasizes supporting small-scale farmers and clarifies that it is not intended to be a covert trade restriction.

Germany, importing 1.1 million tons of coffee annually, mainly sources its coffee from Brazil (30%) and Vietnam (20%), placing it as a significant player in the global coffee market.

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