November 23, 2004

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Last week it was fake Chinese Government bonds. Now it is fake coffee. I hate the stuff so this one is for that legion of coffee addicts:

If you happen to be in Chengdu city and buy a cup of Blue Mountain coffee, which is currently one of the most sought-after coffees in the world, you might pay anywhere from 35 Yuan (US$4.20) to 120 Yuan (US$14.50) for a cup. What’s the catch, besides the price? You’d be buying a fake cup of coffee.

For a long time now, suppliers have struggled to meet the demands for Blue Mountain beans. Of the coffee shops in Chengdu, 80 percent advertise Blue Mountain coffee. That’s 2,000 cups of fake Blue Mountain coffee per day in Chengdu. Now even the fake Blue Mountain-style coffees made from cheap Brazilian and Guadeloupe beans are in short supply.

The article says Japan takes about 85% of Blue Montain coffee exports, the rest to Europe and the US. There are no official exports of the Jamaican coffee to China at all. Instead you can buy one of three varities: "cheap" Blue Mountain is a blend of el cheapo Brazilian coffee; "premium" is a mix of Hawaiian Kona or Jamaica High Mountain coffee cut with lesser blends; "import" is a genuine Blue Mountain blend imported from Japan and being 30% true and 70% Jamaica High Mountain. It sells at a massive US$12 a cup. That's liquid gold. It explains why the fake stuff is so popular.

Demand creates its own supply.

posted by Simon on 11.23.04 at 02:19 PM in the


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Simon's China and East Asia Briefing: 30th Nov 2004
Excerpt: The following is a digest of highlights from the past month's Asia by Blog series over at The round-up has four key areas of focus: China, Taiwan & Hong Kong (Politics, Economy & lifestyle, History sport & culture, Information), Korea...
Weblog: Winds of Change.NET
Tracked: November 30, 2004 01:54 PM


I think the fresh stuff from Yunnan is pretty good myself.

posted by: Matt Waters on 11.23.04 at 03:01 PM [permalink]

Actually, under the right circumstances, I'd rather have the fake stuff anyway.

posted by: RP on 11.24.04 at 03:10 AM [permalink]

So what? Who in China drinks coffee anyway - apart from the gweilo and a few show off rich kids?
We're talking here about peope who will spend $50 on a good vintage wine and then mix it with Coca Cola.

posted by: Mike on 11.25.04 at 07:54 PM [permalink]

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