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Convenience Store Coffee Hits the Top in Japan

The popular annual list rates products based on sales, novelty and influence.
November 8, 2013

​TOKYO — What’s the biggest hit product of 2013 in Japan? If you answered convenience store coffee, you’d be right, Japan Today reports. Nikkei Trendy, a magazine by Nikkei Business Publications Inc., conducts an annual survey of the year’s most popular products based on influence, novelty and sales.

Topping the list for 2013 is convenience store coffee. This year, many of the large convenience store chains started offering fresh coffee via coffee machines installed onsite. While many Japanese are comfortable purchasing coffee in a can from vending machines or conbinis (convenience stores), the advent of coffee cafes led to more people purchasing fresh ground coffee from Starbucks and local chains.

Conbinis started selling inexpensive coffee through self-service coffee machines to get back its lost market share. These machines allow convenience stores to reach a wider audience, especially in remote areas that don’t have coffee shops but do have conbinis.

Other things on the list include a Japanese mobile game called Puzzle & Dragons, TV series “Hanzawa Naoki,” and Nexus 7 and the iPad mini.