The popularity of coffee has been on the rise in Canada in recent years. For many Canadians, it is now an established part of their day and the country has etched its way into the top ten of global coffee consumers.
This article is for anyone thinking of opening a coffee shop, selling or producing coffee, or simply interested in finding out the statistics related to coffee consumption in Canada. You will find statistics on how much coffee is consumed in Canada, how many Canadians drink coffee, and what the most popular coffee shops are in Canada. We have also included details of the biggest coffee-drinking nations in the world for comparison.
Coffee Consumption Statistics for Canadians
- Because of COVID-19, the market size of the coffee and snack shop sector fell from $7.4 billion in 2019 to $3.3 billion in 2020.
- In 2021/22, Canadians consumed 5.03 million 60 kg bags of coffee.
- Coffee is more popular than tap water in Canada with 71% of Canadians drinking coffee regularly compared to 63%.
- 55-64-year-old Canadians represent almost a quarter of coffee drinkers aged 18-64.
- Retired Canadians drink 2.6 cups of coffee on average, more than people who are still in the labour force.
- Tim Hortons is the largest coffee chain in Canada with 3,520 stores across the country.
- Canadians spend on average $35.21 per month on coffee.
- Over 50% of Canadians who purchase coffee from coffee shops prefer traditional coffee.
- Finnish people are the biggest coffee drinkers in the world consuming 12 kg per coffee per person in a year.
Coffee Consumption in Canada
In just over ten years, the consumption of coffee in Canada has increased by almost a million 60 kg bags per year. According to Statista, in 2010/11, Canadians consumed 4.25 million 60 kg bags of coffee in a year. Ten years later, in 2020/21, they drank 4.98 million 60 kg bags in a year. In 2021/22, the consumption rose to over 5 million, with Canadians consuming 5.03 60 kg bags during the year.
On average, Canadians consume 2.7 cups of coffee per day. Around 72% of Canadians aged 18 to 19 are regular coffee drinkers, meaning they drink at least one cup of coffee every day. Residents of Manitoba and Saskatchewan consume more than the Canadian average. In these two provinces, around 18% of coffee drinkers consume at least five cups of coffee in a day.
Canadians drink most of their coffee at home, with seven out of ten coffees drunk at home rather than in coffee houses, on the go, or at work. Approximately 80% of Canadian coffee drinkers have their coffee in the morning.
When Canadians are drinking coffee at home, the most popular brand is Tim Hortons at 23%. The second most popular brand is Maxwell House, which was chosen by 21% of Canadians.
Coffee is the Most Popular Drink in Canada
According to the Coffee Association of Canada, coffee is the most popular drink in Canada. It is even more popular than tap water. In 2020, 71% of Canadians drank coffee regularly, while only 63% drank tap water regularly. Tea was the third most popular drink at 48%, followed by bottled water and milk and milk beverages at 44% and 39%, respectively.
Canadians’ Coffee Consumption Increases With Age
The biggest group of coffee drinkers, when looking at ages between 18 and 64, are Canadians in the 55 to 64 age group. This group represents approximately 24.6% of coffee drinkers in Canada. Canadians aged 18 to 24 make up the smallest portion of coffee drinkers at 8.9%. The portions for the other age groups are 20.6% for 25 to 34-year-olds, 22.4% for 35-44-year-olds, 23.5% for 45-54-year-olds, and 24.5% for 55-64-year-olds.
Retired Canadians Drink More Coffee Than Working Canadians
When looking at coffee consumption by occupation, a Time2Play survey found that retired Canadians drank the most coffee. Construction workers consumed the next largest amount, averaging 2.4 cups per day, while people working in the field of life, physical, and social sciences drink 2.2 cups a day on average.
The architecture and engineering industry employees were the least likely workers to drink coffee, averaging just 1.2 cups per day. However, the average student drank 1.1 cups of coffee per day, most likely the lowest consuming group because of the cost of coffee.
Millennials Are a Growing Coffee Consumer Group
The number of millennials drinking coffee is increasing year by year. Coffee consumption among 18 to 24-year-olds in North America, including both Canada and the United States, has increased by 14 points from 34% to 48%, and between 25 and 39-year olds 9 points from 51% to 60%.
Changes to Coffee Drinking Habits During the Pandemic
The main change brought on by the pandemic was that Canadians were drinking more coffee at home than before the pandemic. The portion of Canadians drinking their coffee at home was 78% before the pandemic and 87% during the pandemic.
There is no data available at present on how this has changed since the pandemic restrictions were lifted. However, based on the increased market size of coffee and snack shops in 2021 and 2022, it is likely that more Canadians drink coffee outside of their homes again.
Another notable change during the pandemic was the increased number of Canadians who got their coffees from drive-throughs. Before the pandemic, just 18% would purchase coffee from drive-throughs compared to 29% during the pandemic.
Canadian Coffee and Snack Shop Market Size
According to Statista, the Canadian coffee and snack shop sector had a market size of $5.4 billion in 2012. It experienced steady growth until the COVID-19 pandemic shut down coffee shops. As a result, the market size was $3.3 billion in 2020, compared to $7.4 billion in 2019.
In 2021, the market was recovering from the harshest pandemic months and the market size was back to $6.8 billion. Statista predicted the market size to reach $7 billion in 2022.
Coffee Industry Employment
As well as thousands of chain coffee shops, there are over 7,000 independent coffee shops in Canada. The coffee market in Canada employs about 160,000 people in coffee shops and an additional 5,000 people work in the coffee roasting and manufacturing sector. In addition, there are thousands of indirect jobs linked to the coffee market in, for example, packaging and cup manufacturing.
The Largest Coffee Shop Chains in Canada
Despite Starbucks increasing its presence in Canada, Tim Hortons is still the most numerous coffee shop chain in the country. As of June 2023, there were 3,520 Tim Hortons in the country and they had shops in every province and every territory.
Starbucks is the second biggest coffee shop chain in Canada with 1,423 shops In April 2023 across the country. They have shops in all ten provinces and in two of the territories, with Nunavut being the only region with no Starbucks coffee shops in Canada. The next biggest coffee shop chains are Country Style, Second Cup, and Robin’s Donuts with 350, 193, and 140 shops, respectively.
Spending on Coffee Across Canada
According to the survey by Time2Play, which included spending on both takeout coffees and wholesale coffee bags, Canadians spend $35.21 on average per month on coffee, with British Columbians spending the most. The residents of BC spent on average $38.28 per month on coffee. Ontarians were the second-biggest spenders with a $36.60 monthly average, followed by Albertans who spend $36.42 on coffee per month.
The lowest monthly spending on coffee was in Saskatchewan where residents spend $22.06 per month. The second lowest was in Manitoba, with $28.02. There was not enough data from Prince Edward Island or the three territories.
While Tim Hortons Has the Most Shops, It is Not Often The Consumers’ First Choice
Based on the survey findings by Time2Play, Tim Hortons is not the number one choice for most Canadians when it comes to coffee. In Ontario, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Alberta, the most popular shop for takeout coffee was Starbucks.
In Quebec and Manitoba, the residents preferred private-label brands. British Columbians favour local brands, while Folger’s was the first choice in New Brunswick and McCafé by McDonald’s in Saskatchewan.
Traditional Coffee is the Favourite Type of Coffee in Canada
Despite so many options to choose from, the Canadian coffee drinker is still most likely to choose a traditional coffee. Out of the roughly two-thirds of Canadian coffee drinkers who visit coffee shops at least a mong, over 50% prefer a traditional brew.
However, specialty coffees, such as cappuccinos, espressos, café mochas, lattes, and macchiatos, are growing in popularity. Approximately a third of Canadian coffee drinkers prefer an espresso-based drink.
How Does Canada Compare With Other Countries?
When compared with other countries, Canada ranks at number ten for the most coffee consumption. Finland consumes the most coffee. The Finns drink four cups daily on average, with some drinking 8-9 cups. This equals 12 kg of coffee per person per year.
The second-biggest coffee drinkers are the Norwegians who drink 9.9 kg of coffee per year per person. This is over three cups per day. Third is Iceland with 9 kg, Denmark is fourth with 8.7 kg, and the Netherlands the fifth with 8.4 kg. Sweden, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg take the spots from six to nine.
Canada, in tenth place, is the only country not in Europe to make it to the top ten coffee drinkers in the world. The average Canadian consumes 6.5 kg of coffee per year. That is just over half the amount the Finns consume.
If we were to compare consumption in terms of the number of coffee beans consumed, then the United States consumes the most, with 27,310,000 of 60 lb coffee bags consumed in a year. Germany and Japan are next with 8,670,000 and 7,551,000 coffee bags, respectively.
Canadians drink 2.7 cups of coffee per day and consume most of their coffee at home. While the COVID-19 pandemic stopped Canadians from going into coffee shops, it didn’t impact the amount of coffee consumed in Canada much as Canadians switched to drinking more coffee at home.
Older Canadians are more likely to drink coffee than younger Canadians. However, the number of millennial coffee drinkers is growing the fastest. Canada, at number ten, is the only non-European country to rank in the top ten countries with the highest coffee consumption with 6.5 kg of coffee consumed per person in a year.
Frequently Asked Questions
On average, Canadians drink 2.7 cups of coffee per day. This equals 5.03 million 60 kg bags of coffee or 6.5 kg per person in a year.
When looking at the amount of coffee consumed per person, Canada is the tenth biggest coffee-consuming country in the world and the only country outside Europe to make the top ten. In Canada, the average amount of coffee is 2.7 cups per day.
In Finland, the biggest coffee-drinking nation, people consume at least four cups per day with many people drinking eight or nine cups per day. After Finland, the most coffee is consumed in Norway, Iceland, Denmark, and the Netherlands.
The most popular coffee brand for at-home consumption is Tim Hortons followed by Maxwell House. Tim Hortons also has the most coffee shops/ restaurants in Canada. However, when it comes to buying a coffee from a coffee shop or restaurant, Canadians are more likely to choose Starbucks or local brands than Tim Hortons.