Coffee powder, also known as instant coffee, is one of the most widely consumed commodities in the world. Coffee is brewed from roasted coffee beans, the seeds of coffee plants cultivated in over 70 countries of the world. Coffee forms a leading export for many countries. It is believed that Americans love coffee a lot, but reports show that Australians are the highest consumers of instant coffee all across the globe. 75% of coffee consumed in Australia and New Zealand is instant coffee, the highest percentage registered for any region. In Eastern Europe, instant coffee accounts for over 50% of the overall brewed coffee; in Western Europe, it accounts for more than 25% and together, the two regions drink 40% of the world’s instant coffee.
The global instant coffee market was worth $11.5 Billion in 2019, grew to $52 billion in 2020 and is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 6% within 2020 and 2025. As of 2020, Brazil is the largest producer of coffee, followed by Vietnam. As far as sales is concerned, Europe, Asia, USA and other North American countries contribute the largest share to the global market worth of instant coffee. Growth in urbanization and altering food patterns are some of the primary reasons for the rapid rate at which instant coffee is penetrating global markets. More so, instant coffee is gaining immense popularity around the world, especially among the working population, because it boosts metabolism, improves brain function and keeps the liver healthy.
Many other countries are already contributing to the global market size of instant coffee through an unprecedented adoption of coffee as an everyday drink. Nigeria, for example, records massive growth in the instant coffee market. As of 2015, the Nigerian instant coffee market was US$283 million, about 23% higher than the previous decade, market indications that the sector will experience about 18% CAGR within 2020 and 2025.
Going by available data, instant coffee is on a steady rise in demand and is bound to make a more lucrative business enterprise in a few years than ever. If you are planning to start an instant coffee production business in Nigeria or any other region in Africa, this step-by-step guide is all you need to set the ball rolling.
What Is Instant Coffee?
Coffee powder or instant coffee is a beverage made by grinding roasted coffee beans. It has lower caffeine content and contains a higher amount of antioxidants than brewed coffee. People prefer instant coffee mostly because it is easy to prepare.
What Is Instant Coffee Production?
An instant coffee production business describes the stages involved in turning raw coffee beans into a finished potable. It also involves the act of packaging, marketing and distributing coffee.
Business Opportunities In Instant Coffee Business In Nigeria And Across The World
1). Coffee Roasting Services:
Coffee roasting is a great career choice for any interested persons with little or no technical skills. A coffee roaster is a professional in all aspects of coffee production. A coffee roaster is in charge of roasting and grinding the coffee to instant coffee.
2). Coffee Tasting Or Cupping:
Coffee tasting requires skills such as the ability to assess coffee quality objectively, identify, evaluate and pronounce the attributes of the coffee. It also involves the ability to detect any deficits in the coffee and to make suggestions on how to improve coffee quality. Coffee tasting is a critical aspect of the coffee industry.
3). Maintenance And Repair Services:
Processing coffee requires the use of certain equipment, ranging from roasters to dispensers. They are mostly mechanical and electronic devices that require regular maintenance and servicing to function optimally. This keeps technicians and engineers in business, as they are needed to troubleshoot, repair and maintain equipment, ensure precise installation and un-instillation of equipment, and to maintain an inventory of every equipment and service parts.
4). Marketing And Distribution:
Instant coffee production creates a business room for local and international distributors across the world.
Facts And Benefits Of Instant Coffee
- One standard cup of instant coffee contains only seven calories and small amounts of potassium, magnesium, and niacin (vitamin B3)
- Instant coffee is cheaper than regular coffee
- It has lesser caffeine content
- Instant coffee boosts metabolism
- It enhances brain function
- Reduces the risk of neurodegenerative disease
- Instant coffee also improve liver health
- It improves mental health
- Coffee promotes longevity
- It decreases diabetes risk
- What we know today as instant coffee was first patented in 1881 by Frenchman, Alphonse Allais.
- About 75% of adults in the United Kingdom drink coffee.
- Nescafe, the first popularly known instant coffee brand, was launched in 1938.
- Brazil produces about 2 million tonnes of coffee each passing year.
- Coffee was reportedly invented in 1906 by Englishman George Constant Washington.
- Coffee is the second most traded product after oil.
Types Of Coffee Powder
1). Freeze-Dried Instant Coffee:
Freeze-dried coffee is the highest quality of instant coffee available. This coffee type is prepared from higher-quality coffee beans such as Arabica. The visible sign that your coffee is freeze-dried is the texture. The texture of freeze-dried coffee is solid that even when rolled between two of your fingertips, it is not easily broken and does not crumble.
2). Spray Dried Instant Coffee:
Spray-dried coffee is generally believed to be the cheaper version of the instant coffee. It is made using lower quality coffee beans – for a particular reason. The spray-drying process is more affordable, and in this method, a lot of the natural flavour of the coffee is lost. The texture of spray-dried coffee is the opposite of freeze-dried. If you roll a granule of spray-dried coffee between your fingers, the granule crumbles almost easily. More so, spray-dried coffee is rounder, more porous and fragile-looking, and has a darker colour.
3). Chicory Based Instant:
Chicory coffee is a drink brewed with roasted and ground chicory or a combination of chicory and coffee. It is derived from an entirely different plant. This type of coffee product was produced to sell to people who cannot afford the usual coffee and those who are allergic to caffeine. Chicory-based coffee appears almost orange, distinctively different from the colours of spray-dried and freeze-dried coffee. Also, rubbing a granule between two fingertips disintegrates the granule immediately. It has no “coffee smell”.
How To Start Coffee Powder Production Business In Nigeria: A Step-By-Step Guide
When the coffee beans are dried and ready for processing, the next stage is the roasting of the beans to turn them from their original green colour to standard coffee colour (brown). The beans are roasted at 230°C (446°F) to produce medium roast, which is excellent for drinking with or without milk. After about 10 minutes of roasting, the beans are cooled to 40°C (104°F) to avoid additional cooking from the lingering heat.
The roasted beans are then ground in an industrial roller-mill grinder. This machine can grind about 1,500kg (3,300lbs) of coffee beans per hour. After grinding, coffee loses a lot of the aromas. So, nitrogen gas is pumped into the grinder to capturing the escaping aromas. The vapour is stored in a tank and added later.
At this stage, the ground coffee is now mixed with water to brew in a giant extraction pod. Almost 700kg (1,543lbs) of coffee is brewed at the same time. After which it is filtered.
At this stage, we start to see the transformation from brewed coffee into instant coffee. After brewing and filtering, the coffee is put in a giant evaporation tank. The tank can hold around one million cups of coffee. Thirty thousand litres (6,600 gallons) of coffee is moved through pipes inside the evaporator every hour. After being warmed at 70°C (158°F), the water evaporates.
The coffee extract is pre-chilled through heat exchangers before freeze-drying takes place. Once chilled, it is poured in a conveyor belt connected to a giant freezer and frozen at temperatures between -40°C (-40°F) and -50°C (-58°F). The coffee is then broken up into granules. These deep-frozen granules still contain water which has to be removed.
The granules are placed on trays and driven through a low-pressure tube for several hours to undergo sublimation. Sublimation is the method of turning solid into a gas without passing the main liquid phase. Sublimation is effected by heating the coffee to 60°C (140°F) in a strong vacuum. Under pressure, the frozen water vaporizes and turns directly into steam.
7). Re-adding Lost Aroma:
The coffee granules are gathered and the aromas that were taken beforehand are sprayed over them as they pass through giant sacks.
This is where business branding comes to play. The coffee powder is now ready to be placed into jars or cellophane for sale at local and international markets as well as coffee shops.
9). Marketing And Distribution:
Most brands and organizations involved in the coffee business do not come to play until the distribution and marketing stage. This involves importing, distributing, retailing and selling coffee in small units to the end-consumers.
Challenges Of Starting An Instant Coffee Business In Nigeria
- Coffee consumption in Nigeria is still low.
- Inadequate facilities and infrastructures for processing coffee.
- Instant coffee processing machines are costly.
- Difficulty in getting investors.
- Poor road network stalls distribution within the country.
- Unfavourable international market policies.
- Unstable exchange rates.
To Sum It Up
The international market is very susceptible to growth, even in Nigeria. Coffee powder production may require a lot of mechanical equipment and stages, but the financial returns outweigh the resources invested. As coffee consumption is on the rise, with no end in the near or far future, you are sure to be very successful for a very long time. The instant coffee business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your ability to build a wide network. If you’re looking for a lucrative business to venture into, the instant coffee business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.
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