Norway has the highest consumption of coffee at 10.7 kgs per person compared to the meager 3kgs per person consumed in the United States. That’s an average of 4 cups per day. Half of Norwegian consumption takes place at home, the balance is consumed at coffee shops, cafes and restaurants. Norway is followed by Finland with 10.1kgs and Denmark with 9.7kgs.
Norwegians have been encouraged to drink coffee by the abundance of coffee bars. The number of coffee shops has multiplied significantly in the last few years. The American favorite, Starbucks hasn’t made its debut in Norway yet, but there are plenty of coffee bars owned and operated by varying companies. With only 4.5 million people in Norway, they import 41 tons of coffee to Norway annually.
Perhaps the reason they drink so much coffee is because of Norwegian social habits. Norway has cold winters, yet another reason they may be drawn to a cup of hot java. At dinner parties, it is common for guests to go to another room after dinner and drink coffee with cake and casual socializing often consists of meeting for cake and coffee.
America’s consumption of coffee doesn’t compare to Norway’s consumption. At only 3kgs per person, that equals 1.6 cups of coffee per person per day. Serious coffee drinkers average 3.1 cups of coffee per day. Fifty percent of the U.S. population consumes some kind of coffee drink, espresso, cappuccino, latte and Iced Coffee. Americans drink coffee all day long with sixty-five percent drinking it during the breakfast hours, thirty percent are drinking coffee between meals and five percent are drinking it with other meals.
American consumption is far behind that of Finland and Denmark which follow Norway in top consumption. The Finns drink coffee socially because its available at every gathering, including weddings, funerals, work meetings and parties. During World War II it was scare and afterward the war it seemed to have gained luxury status. In fact at every Finnish history museum coffee-burners are displayed.
In fact it not just Norway and Denmark, its all of the Scandinavian countries that lead the way in coffee consumption. Coffee’s caffeine may be a needed stimulant for a population which is in the dark for half the year. Denmark is like Norway with an abundance of coffee bars making coffee very convenient.. And Starbucks is in Denmark. It has several shops in the capital city of Copenhagen.
Coffee drinking serves a purpose socially and gives many people a kick-start in the morning with a caffeine jolt. The dedicated drinkers of hot java live primarily in cold countries, which seems reasonable. We naturally crave warmth when it’s cold outside.
Americans drink coffee and if not for the reminder that we drink 3kgs per person while Norwegians drink 10.7 kgs per person, we would probably believe we drink too much.
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