Trends and patterns in coffee, cafes and coffee shops

The Specialty Coffee Association has recently published two news pieces with data (and nice infographics) about the coffee industry, the first looking at specialty coffee consumption trends in the US, and the second on the size of the coffee market in Western Europe.

In the US focused article data from the National Coffee Drinking Trends survey is used to show how there have been consistent increases in the consumption of specialty coffee in the US over the last couple of decades with significant increases in the last year. The article highlights how 41% of adults in the US were drinking specialty coffee daily, people drinking specialty coffee were consuming nearly 3 cups a day, and as an overall indication of consumption trends around 59% of coffee consumed was specialty.  The infographic provides a view of the data trends over time and it’s clear to see how there has been a consistent rise in specialty coffee consumption in the US. It will be interesting to see how these trends continue over the next few years, particularly given articles in the media recently have argued that the market is reaching saturation point for coffee shops.

The article on Western Europe includes an infographics with maps of retail sales in cafes and coffee shops, and the number of cafes and coffee shops using data from Euromonitor. Beginning with the retail sales, data is broken down into cafes and coffee focused shops (defined by Euromonitor as places with a focus primarily on serving coffee but where a wider range of food is on offer). The numbers show the the sheer scale of the industry with 301,593 cafes and 13,344 coffee shops with an overall values of over €50 billion. While I very much like looking at maps to see patterns in data (I am a geographer after all) I wanted to explore the data a little more.

SCA Retail sales cafes and coffee shops

Here it’s possible to see the hierarchy in terms of retail sales across the continent. In part these will be affected by population size, but still, it illuminates where the café and coffee shop consumers are spending their money – countries with a long tradition of drinking coffee along with the United Kingdom where visiting coffee shops has experienced a rapid rise in the last couple of decades.

The data suggests there are nearly 315,000 cafes and coffee shops across Western Europe, What isn’t shown here is the growth dynamics between cafes and coffee shops. Cafes were seen to have decline by around 8% since 2010, while coffee shops grew by 50% in the same time period.

In the second infographic which focuses on the number of cafes and coffee shops, the data is broken down by independent and chain coffee shops, and here some interesting (although not surprising) patterns emerge. Independent by this definition is where there are less than 10 branches, and chains have more than 10 branches.

The data suggests that largely the market is dominated by independents – 98% of cafes were independent. Although for coffee shops only 21% were independent, reflecting the rapid expansion of coffee shop chains across the continent. It will be interesting to see over the next few years if these percentages shift as coffee shops in particular seek to expand their presence.

This entry was posted in Cafe Culture, Coffee, coffee culture, Commentaries, data, Economic Impact, Europe, Reports, research, SCA, USA and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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