UK iced beverages keep cool with sustained sales growth

UK iced beverage keeps its cool with sustained sales growth
UK iced beverage keeps its cool with sustained sales growth
07/08/2019 - 05:00
Ice beverage sales increased 14.3% to £395 million in 2018, project Iced UK 2019 has revealed.

The UK’s ice beverages segment is expected to reach £449 million in sales for 2019, but the trade is 'overwhelmingly reliant' on summer sales.

Allegra, who analaysed the data, surveyed over 2,000 UK consumers, targeted at regular iced beverage drinkers. The research was also supported by over 50 consultations with coffee shop owners, including 30 in-depth interviews.

Jeffrey Young, Allegra founder and chief executive, said: “Iced beverages continue to represent a growing opportunity for the UK coffee market to innovate, access younger consumers and broaden the appeal of coffee venues.

“While more work is needed to widen seasonal demand, a robust and diverse iced beverage offer is essential for operators wishing to remain firmly on the pulse of UK coffee market development.”

Under-30s crucial to ice beverage boom

Forty-five percent of under-30s who drink ice beverages say they buy them every week. The younger demographic have a 6% higher consumption of ice beverages outside of the peak June-August window in comparison to older demographics.  

This indicates operators should follow on-trend and 'instagrammable' products including blended smoothies and cold brew.

Cold brew set to take UK by storm

Cold brew is now widely available in the UK, with 45% of industry leaders surveyed identifying it as the ‘most significant product’ available in the iced beverage segment.

The three largest café chains Costa Coffee, Starbucks and Café Nero have significantly contributed to the growth of cold brew. Two thirds of the industry leaders surveyed expect cold brew to be a high street staple within three years.

Consumers remain frosty on cold weather consumption and value perception

Seasonal consumption remains a problem as 66% of those surveyed only purchase ice beverages during hot weather and just 10% were willing to purchase during the winter months.

Value perception also remains a challenge as just 24% of UK consumers surveyed believed iced beverages were good value-for-money.

Ready-to-drink (RTD) raises its game

RTD product launches from Costa, Lavazza and Union Hand Roasted Coffee demonstrated its growing commercial appeal. These products generally contain fewer calories and less sugar than blended iced beverages.

Half of those surveyed by Allegra would purchase iced beverages more often if they were healthier.

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