How pubs can take advantage of the latest trends in tea

By James Beeson

- Last updated on GMT

Hot space: the tea market is a lucrative opportunity for pubs seeking to increase turnover
Hot space: the tea market is a lucrative opportunity for pubs seeking to increase turnover
Ahead of National Tea Day this weekend (21-22 April), how can pubs tap into the UK’s love affair with this hot beverage?

More than 51m people in Britain claim to drink tea, and around 165m cups of tea are consumed daily. Furthermore, recent research from Tetley's Tea Report 2018​ showed that revealing over a third of, what it terms as, iGens (those born in 1996 or later), say they would pay more for tea or coffee with added health benefits.

Hence, the tea market is a lucrative opportunity for pubs seeking to increase turnover, particularly during daytime trading hours.

UK purchasing company Beacon believes that customers are no longer satisfied with a ‘builder's brew’ and are increasingly looking for more choice on tea menus, and points towards the growing popularity of green and herbal teas.

Healthy hot beverage boom

“Black tea still dominates as the most popular drink consumed outside of the home, with 75% of consumers making it their drink of choice,” explains the company’s purchasing manager Alice Bexon. “However, as health and wellbeing trends boom, particularly among Millennials, consumers have become increasingly selective about their dietary choices, with many opting for healthier hot beverages.”

“As consumers turn to drinks that serve a purpose, such as increased energy or relaxation, we encourage operators to capitalise on this upcoming trend by highlighting and effectively communicating their range’s health benefits in order to appear innovative and attractive to this new generation of customers.”

Consumers are also more likely to consume food with tea than any other beverage, according to Tetley Tea studies, and hence Beacon suggests pubs should consider offering special tea and food deals, to encourage upselling.

“While tea is habitually chosen to quench thirst, it is also commonly paired with food,” adds Bexon. “In order for operators to capitalise on this, establishments could consider special tea and food deals, to encourage upselling. For example, consider offering an afternoon tea experience.”

Element of theatre

Beacon also highlights the importance of adding an element of theatre to the experience of having tea. “One of our customers, the Best Western Clifton Hotel, Folkestone, Kent, has seen a major boost in its afternoon tea profits, increasing bookings by 900%, with the use of a stunt cake artist,” explains Bexon. “Extravagant food artistry can range from chocolate teapots to icing flower arrangements – really giving your consumers something to talk about!”

Meanwhile, new research from Clipper Teas has revealed Brits will endure 9,828 disappointing cups of tea in their lifetime.

The study revealed we drink an average of 28 cups a week, but at least three of those are truly disappointing, with “too weak”, “luke-warm” and “too milky” coming in as the top three complaints.

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