• Cyril McAree

Stale Coffee Shop Food Menus Leave Consumers Unsatisfied


A new report by UCC Coffee UK & Ireland says coffee shop food menus are falling short of the mark, with operators missing vital food sales opportunities. And with over two-thirds of consumers buying coffee shop food regularly, it has never been more important for operators to improve on their food proposition to maximise profitability.

Pic Shows: CC Coffee UK & Ireland ambassador, leading international pastry chef, Sarah Hartnett

The survey, which was conducted in the UK, is pertinent to Irish trade operators, who are facing increased competition and raising the bar when it comes to offering the best quality coffee. The report, created in conjunction with UCC Coffee UK & Ireland ambassador, leading international pastry chef, Sarah Hartnett, explores how operators can go beyond coffee to create a point of difference.

Sarah Hartnett, who originally hails from Cork, says, “Innovative and exciting menus are a key success factor for coffee shops in both Ireland and the UK – the battle to attract and retain customers will be fought on food. Ireland is a world leader in hospitality, breaking ground and shaping food trends that traverse sectors and borders, however, despite an expanding coffee culture, this is not always reflected in coffee shops.”

“People want to buy food and stay on site to eat. Operators aren’t just selling a coffee – they’re selling an experience. Venues that elevate the experience beyond coffee, with well-paired, innovative and on-trend food offers, will cement their reputation as a great destination. And people will be willing to pay.”

Gareth Davies, head of coffee excellence, UCC Coffee UK & Ireland comments, “The way your customers choose a snack or a dessert comes down to the taste – the decision is based on the experience they are craving when they reach the counter or at the end of a meal and how it’s going to make them feel. Operators need to ensure this craving is met in the context of coffee by understanding the basics of drink types, for example, a flat white versus black filter, and roast profile from light to dark.”

Other key findings from the report include:

  • One-quarter of consumers eat and drink on coffee shop premises

  • Consumers are willing to pay more for quality food

  • Breakfast products are most in demand

  • 74% of consumers ordering food with their coffee opt for cakes or pastries

  • The top foods purchased with coffee are: (1) cakes; (2) sandwiches; (3) pastries

  • The top cakes purchased with coffees are: (1) chocolate; (2) carrot; (3) cheesecake

  • One in three regularly buy healthier food with coffee

  • A lack of healthy options means operators miss food sales opportunities on one in seven visits

  • Indulgence is on the decline, with healthier food a key success factor

  • The most sought after healthy menu addition is fresh salads

For the full insight on how coffee shop food menus leave consumers unsatisfied, and how operators can raise their game to attract and retain customers, visit www.ucc-coffee.co.uk/services/added-value.html/

#UCCCoffee #SarahHartnett

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