Nikolay Stefanov, General Manager of Jacobs Douwe Egberts for the South Central Europe region, which includes Bulgaria, Romania and Greece
How did the pandemic affect the coffee market in Bulgaria - for the nine months what is the percentage drop in value for the whole market and for JDE in particular?
The coffee market consists of two segments: coffee that we consume at home and coffee that we consume outside - for example in a local cafe or while waiting for your bus to arrive. Our business in Bulgaria is based only in the segment "consumption at home", which in recent years has reported an average growth of about 2% in value for the Bulgarian market as a whole. But there is a dynamic in the different segments of coffee, which far exceeds this growth rate, for example, capsules and coffee beans are in double digits.
It is obvious that the safety measures against COVID-19 have had a dramatic impact on consumption outside the home - fewer trips, fewer visits to restaurants, etc. We do not have specific numbers for the decline, but it is a fact that these missed cups of coffee outside are usually made up at home, so in total the Bulgarian drinks more coffee. All this has had a good effect on our business. With this change in habits, the volumes that we sell on the Bulgarian market increase in 2020 until now.
We are traditionally stronger than some of our competitors in the segment of coffee consumption at home. Most of them are more dependent on the channels for consumption outside. This shows the sustainability of the coffee category in general and our business in particular during COVID-19.