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Young people drink coffee at a local coffee shop in Ho Chi Minh City. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)
Business Spotlight

Vietnam's coffee culture survives 10 years of Starbucks

Deep history, popularity of local brews make country hard for global brands to crack

LIEN HOANG, Nikkei staff writer | Vietnam

HO CHI MINH CITY -- On a recent Sunday, a pink-breasted parrot escaped from its cage at Mindfully Cafe and hopped around the shop. Nguyen Kim Ngan, owner of the Ho Chi Minh City cafe, alternated between frothing drinks and trying to coax the emerald bird back into its cage.

Cafes like hers have retained their quirks and held their ground even after a coffee shop with another green mascot hopped onto the scene: Starbucks.

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