Consumers prefer tea at home

Consumers prefer tea at home

Almost half (46%) of consumers do not believe the quality of tea is better in cafés than at home, a new report by BRITA Professional has revealed.

This in stark contrast to the 52% of consumers who said the taste of coffee would make them choose to visit one café over another.

The findings of BRITA’s report, Life is Better Filtered: Beyond the Brew showed that 29% of consumers prefer the taste of tea when it is made at home. And, while 37% of consumers visit a café to drink coffee they can’t make at home, only 15% said the same for tea.

The report said this demonstrates an opportunity for operators to improve their tea offering and tap into the 165 million cups that are consumed daily in the UK.

Consumers said the the machine used, filtered water and whether artisanal coffee beans are used were the most important elements when making a hot beverage

The research showed that using water filter to create hot beverages was a key consideration for 67.1% of consumers.

Samantha Scoles, business manager at BRITA Professional, said: “It’s no secret that we are a nation of coffee connoisseurs and tea enthusiasts. With this growing consumer interest comes a challenge for operators to provide an experience which not only stands out from the competition, but also encourages repeat purchases.


Comment:  Samantha Scoles, business manager at BRITA Professional

Never before has there been such high consumer expectation when eating and drinking out of home, and hot beverages are no exception.

In fact, 9 in 10 professionals think consumer expectations of the service they receive has increased in recent years. This is largely due to fierce competition on the high street, consumers wanting greater choice of hot drinks and increased consumer knowledge about the quality of drinks served. With this in mind, it’s becoming increasingly challenging for operators to create a memorable experience and stand out from the competition.

It’s no secret that the hot beverages sector is rapidly changing. We conducted independent research, which found that the top three factors café operators say have had the biggest business impact in recent years are:

  • A greater consumer interest in coffee 64%
  • The need to have a wider selection of tea and coffee choices available 53%
  • The rise in the number of cafés on the high street 48%

When looking at coffee in particular, half of consumers believe they understand more than ever about the intricacies of making good coffee and how it could be served, and over half say the taste of coffee would make them choose to visit one café over another.

So, how can baristas ensure their coffee is the highest quality cup after cup and exceed consumer expectations?

84% of coffee shop professionals place unfiltered water as the most important factor for adversely affecting a hot beverage, whether that’s the quality of the water itself or limescale on machinery caused by unfiltered water. For consumers, the top five elements they believe impacts the taste of their coffee order are:

  1. Coffee that’s made with a quality coffee machine 20%
  2. Coffee made with filtered water 18%
  3. Coffee made with artisanal coffee beans 17%
  4. Flavourful aroma 16%
  5. A trained barista made it for me 12%

There is no doubt that as consumer expectations of what makes a quality hot beverage increases, the pressure is on for operators to stay ahead of the competition and strive to provide the kind of innovative and exciting offering that consumers have come to expect. Operators need to evaluate their hot beverage offer and make sure it’s going beyond consumer expectations at every touch point, whether that’s the machine used, investing in water filters, providing a specials menu of artisanal coffee beans, or running in-depth training for baristas. With three new coffee shops opening on the high street each day, now is the time to ensure you’re creating a quality, memorable experience.



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