A new report by UCC Coffee UK & Ireland shows that coffee shop food menus are falling short of the mark, with operators missing food sales opportunities as a result.
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.
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 was created in conjunction with UCC Coffee UK & Ireland ambassador, and leading international pastry chef, Sarah Hartnett. It explores how operators can go beyond coffee to create a point of difference.
Other key findings from the report include that 25% of consumers eat and drink on coffee shop premises, and 74% of consumers ordering food with their coffee opt for cakes or pastries. Healthier foods are increasingly important as indulgence is on the decline, with one in seven customers not purchasing food owing to a lack of a healthy option.
Sarah Hartnett, who originally hails from Cork, said: “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, commented: “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.”
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/