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We call it coffee, but we mean espresso: Italian style has turned the most popular beverage in the world into a must. 800 roasters have made their own version: from the plantation to the cup.

Coffee is one of the engines of world trade and probably the world’s most consumed beverage. But Italy has made it unique by inventing the espresso and its offspring, the cappuccino. Our country is the only one to produce the so-called bar blend, which lends coffee its socializing overtones and enhances its hedonistic value. It is a mistake to claim that the Italians are the leading coffee drinkers in the world: in fact, they are the tenth in the world and fifth in Europe, and drink less than half as much as the Finns, for example. What makes the Italian coffee flavour unique is, precisely, consumption in public, associated with bars and the espresso. The roasters (there are over 800 in Italy) have personalized the blends over the course of time and refined roasting techniques and processes, such as that using wood burning. In recent years they have also shortened the supply chain by signing agreements with the growers (helping to free some producers from dependence on large trusts) or even buying plantations, to ensure consistent quality and suitable raw material. The Italian style coffee has been translated into a cultural consumer value and also given rise to new industries and products. In today’s world almost all espresso machines are Italian and the Moka, which takes its name from the coffee capital of Yemen, has become a design object (on show in the Moma collections), just as the Neapolitan version, the Napoletana, remains an icon of Southern Italy.