Coffee shops to become ‘new local’ outnumbering pubs by 2030

By Georgina Townshend

- Last updated on GMT

The total UK coffee shop market grew 6% in 2016 with an estimated 22,845 outlets
The total UK coffee shop market grew 6% in 2016 with an estimated 22,845 outlets

Related tags: Alcoholic beverage

Coffee shops are set to outnumber pubs by 2030 becoming “the new local”, according to a new report.

The study by Project Café2017 UK, ​led by Allegra World Coffee Portal, found that the total UK coffee shop market grew 6% in 2016 with an estimated 22,845 outlets.

Researchers predict that the total UK coffee shop market will exceed 32,000 outlets by 2025 with a turnover of £16 billion. This will be supported by an annual outlet growth of 6%, the report said.

“As coffee shops are increasingly viewed as the local of choice by British consumers, they are set to outnumber pubs in the UK by 2030,” the report said.

Pubs still number 50,000

However, the report’s findings have not caused concern for the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA). A spokesman said: “Coffee shops are certainly doing well, but there are still 50,000 pubs.

“These days, many pubs are also serving great coffee, opening in the mornings and serving breakfast, so there is competition for market share.

“Pubs are always evolving – as well as becoming more family friendly, they have a unique role at the heart of local communities that can’t easily be replaced by any other type of business.”

But he warned that pub supporters need to ensure the sector doesn’t face unfair treatment in the tax system via punitive rates of beer duty and business rates.

Coffee more popular than wine

Turnover growth in the coffee shop market was 12% in 2016 reaching £8.9 billion.

In comparison the on-trade wine industry was valued at £4.2 billion, according to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association​ (WTSA), less than half of the coffee business, with spirits being valued at £6 billion.

However, Miles Beale, chief executive at WSTA, said that coffee was not subject to “the crippling duty rates which wine and spirits are burdened with”.

Tough trading landscape

“People who go to the pub are after a totally different experience than people who pop into a coffee shop,” said Beale.

“Pubs are a vital part of the social fabric of local communities and are places to spend time with family and friends enjoying a glass of wine or gin and tonic with a meal and sometimes a coffee.

“The pub trade makes an important contribution to the UK economy, with total alcohol sales worth about £16.2bn.

“People who drop into a coffee shop will not stay as long as a pub goer. Coffee is often a drink that is taken away and can be churned out a faster pace. To make wine more accessible government would have to address the triple whammy price rises which now face the consumer.

“Between duty rises, Brexit’s impact on the pound and rising inflation the wine and spirit businesses face a tough trading landscape.”

Related topics: Soft & Hot Drinks

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