What can we expect for the coffee sector in the future?
From premium coffee brands like Starbucks to independent stores in a quirky location, coffee shops are popping up nationwide — with already around 21,000 in the country. The selection and availability of one of the world’s most loved beverages has expanded massively in recent years, with ingredients and ways of offering the ‘coffee drinking experience’ becoming more innovative with every new creation.
With a great focus on sustainability, organic sources, health-conscious options, and quirky flavours, we look at the rise in popularity of coffee beverages and which trends we can expect to become the standard in UK coffee shops of the future.
You can’t deny that coffee is one of the most consumed drinks around the world, especially in developed nations. World coffee production for the 2017-18 period is estimated at around 158.78 million bags — an increase of 0.7% compared to 2016-17 — while coffee’s global market value is anticipated to see a 5.5% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). Looking at the industry from a UK perspective, the British Coffee Association claims that we drink around 95 million cups of coffee a day.
Have you tried cold-brew coffee?
Expect cold-brew coffees to become a momentous trend here in the UK. Cold-brew is more than just ‘cold coffee’ — and it’s not iced coffee either. Cold-brew coffee is brewed with cold or room-temperature water over 12 to 24 hours. The reason it’s growing in popularity is because it often features a mellower, sweeter, more full-bodied taste with less acidity. More than that, it’s easily bottled and ideal for on-the-go coffee consumers, which makes it convenient for those who don’t have time in the morning to queue and order a hot option.
Considering that cold-brew coffee is also easier to brew in large batches, there’s no reason that coffee shops shouldn’t be on board.
Have you tried nitrogen-infused coffee?
There’s a great space in the market for nitrogen infused coffee. Nitro-brew coffee is a type of cold-brew beverage served on tap and infused with nitrogen that delivers a creamy, ice-cold drink that has the look and texture of a pint of ale! Recently, Starbucks introduced it to its UK outlets after success in the United States and it’s highly probable that other chains and independent shops will follow suit.
Have you tried flat coffee?
Research has suggested that through premium coffee shops, flat whites make up 10% of all orders. Currently an emerging trend and set to become a regular entry on most coffee shops’ menu boards, drinks such as flat blacks and even flat mochas are gearing up to challenge the popularity of the flat white — so keep an eye out for it at your local cafe.
A look at alternative coffee mixers
Figures released by Agribusiness Intelligence found that in Britain, the alternative milk sector is set to increase by 43% in the next four years — currently worth an astonishing £6.9 billion. Recently, the trend for non-dairy foods and drinks and other milk-substitute products that suit lifestyles, like vegetarianism, and conditions, such a lactose intolerance, has grown — and this is affecting the coffee shop industry, too.
There’s a lot of variation too. Oat, soy, rice, almond, cashew, coconut, and macadamia milks will likely grow in availability in UK coffee shops, with greater creativity around how baristas infuse their gourmet and speciality drinks with these alternative mixers.
Pop-up street coffee
There’s no reason why independent coffee shops should be taking advantage of the pop-up street market — all they need is great coffee and sturdy paper coffee cups. Head of marketing at KERB — a street food event organiser — Alison O’Reilly, said: “Now a lot of people are leaving nine-to-five jobs in finance, tech and marketing. They see it as a low-risk way of setting up a restaurant without having to invest hundreds of thousands of pounds.”
The idea has caused a lot of conversation and has led to many great experiences for coffee drinkers. Considering the rising popularity of cold-brew coffee — suited to spring and summer — alongside hot-coffee options — ideal for autumn and winter; launching a coffee street food business offers the potential to be a lucrative, year-round venture.