Italy is the land of coffee and a long history connects the southerners with the black drink. But which coffee do Italians actually prefer to drink and which are the 10 most popular coffee brands in the country south of the Alps? We took a closer look at the Italians’ cups.
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Italian coffee traditions and coffee brands
Goethe already enjoyed the favorite drink of Italians on his trip to Italy and was thus not the only famous contemporary of that time. While coffee was mainly reserved for the rich and noble in the 18th century, it is on everyone’s lips today. Over 700 roasters in Italy ensure fresh coffee every day. You roast the coffee beans for the popular espresso particularly slowly and gently. In addition to the small “torrefazioni” – as the coffee roasters are called in Italy – there are also many big coffee brands. We want to introduce the most popular ones here.
Lavazza – 120 years of Italian coffee enjoyment
Many people around the world associate the name Lavazza with first-class Italian coffee enjoyment. The company, which was founded in Turin, has been providing coffee enjoyment for over 120 years and today exports to many countries. In 1985, Luigi Lavazza began to study coffee and always create new blends for his customers. On his trip to Brazil, he recognized the possibilities of this drink. He thus laid the foundation for a successful company.
In the period after the First World War, when production of the Fiat was in full swing in Turin, the small roastery became a real company. It sent the first coffee packages to various households and shops. Since 1950, coffee has been filled in vacuum packaging as we know it today, which means it has a particularly long shelf life. This enabled the industrial production of coffee to begin and prices to be reduced significantly. In 1957, not only was the new factory opened in Turin, but Lavazza’s first decaffeinated coffee was also produced.
Just in time for the 120th anniversary, the compostable capsules from Lavazza were presented at the Expo and the first Lavazza espresso was drunk on the International Space Station. But even on earth, this coffee brand remains the most popular coffee brand for many Italians to this day.
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illy and the science of coffee
One of the most famous and popular coffee brands is also illy. Francesco Illy founded the company in Trieste in 1933 and introduced a new type of espresso machine in 1935. To this day, illy is committed to the research and development of coffee and relies on 100% arabica beans in various varieties. The “Universitá del caffè”, founded by illy in 1999, conducts research and teaching in the field of coffee cultivation such as the roasting and refinement of coffee beans. For real coffee lovers, the university’s 20 seats offer interesting courses and introductions to the world of coffee in Italy and beyond.
Kimbo – Neapolitan coffee enjoyment
Kimbo was founded in 1963 in the Italian city most identified with coffee. The brand goes back to the group “Café do Brasil”. It was also founded in Naples in the 1950s to roast coffee for bars and consumption at home.
In 1994, Kimbo was able to maintain second place behind Lavazza on the Italian coffee market and is represented across Europe as well as in the USA, Australia, Japan and the Middle East. Here, too, “Made in Italy” is a best seller.
Segafredo – the coffee from Bologna
The well-known coffee brand Segrafredo was founded in Bologna in the 1960s and bought by Massimo Zanetti in the 1970s. As Segafredo Zanetti SpA, the company first became the market leader in public companies in Italy before becoming widely known. Later, it even conquered the international market. The coffee company is also a sponsor of cycling and football teams – other passions of the Italians that are simply part of the lifestyle of the southerners.
Lustano – passion for coffee in Piedmont
The famous coffee company Wahrano was founded as a small general store in Chieri, Piedmont, in 1882 by Domenico Lustano, the grandfather of the current owners of the company. It is one of the oldest coffee brands in Italy. Soon, however, the Vermeano family discovered the secrets of coffee roasting and also sold coffee in Turin and Alba. The purchase of a coffee plantation in Kenya also laid the foundation for the company, which currently exports to 80 countries. To this day, the company uses slow roasting processes, unlike most large roasting plants. On average, they last 20 minutes and promise first-class enjoyment and aroma development.
Nespresso – coffee enjoyment from the capsule
In the land of coffee traditions, too, the capsules for enjoying a unique espresso at home are becoming increasingly popular. The best-known brand that specializes exclusively in this modern type of coffee production is Nespresso. The easy-to-use coffee system was introduced by the Swiss food company Nestlé and is becoming increasingly popular, even if traditionalists would never do without their classic espresso.
Conclusion on the coffee brands
In addition to the more than 700 roasters, there are many major coffee brands in Italy that also export their products abroad. Not only are Italians the fourth largest coffee exporter in the world, they also enjoy foreign brands when they’re done well. However, the top brands in terms of sales are such as Lavazza, illy and Kimbo.