Shanghai company plans a ‘Starbucks of China’ using Ecuadorian coffee

Apr 14, 2016 | 2 comments

A Chinese company plans to open a chain of coffee shops throughout China using Ecuadorian coffee. Inkalab says it will build its brand based on the successful Starbucks business model.

A coffee plant in Loja Province.

A coffee plant in Loja Province.

Inkalab announced last week that it will buy several varieties of Ecuadorian coffee and offer blends, as well as a single origin selection.

Santiago Yáñez, an Ecuadorian commercial consultant in Shanghai where the first Inkalab will open later this year, says the company will import green coffee beans to be roasted and packaged in China. “They have sampled many kinds of coffee from around the world and have found Ecuadorian coffee to be the best,” he said. “They will use our coffee exclusively.”

Yáñez says Inklab has been in conversation with coffee growers in Loja, Zamora, Imbabura, Vilcabamba, Yunguilla and the Galapagos Islands. “They are experimenting now with various roasting techniques, developing unique flavors from the blends,” he said. Like Starbucks, Inkalab will sell coffee by the cup or in the package from its shops, he said, but will also provide coffee to hotels and restaurants.

“Inkalab believes the time is right to expand the coffee market in China,” said Yáñez. “The Chinese are showing great interest in coffee and demand is growing rapidly.”

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In addition to its coffee shops, Inkalab plans to build several restaurants. The first, in Shanghai, will feature Ecuadorian ancestral cuisine and be called Pachamama.

 

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