Paul Radin, the owner of Coffee Hit, has joined three coffee industry experts to share their predictions for 2021 as part of a webinar series for The Marco Academy.
Paul, on the panel with Ed Buston from Clifton Coffee Roasters and Luke Powell from Sage Appliances, discussed changes in the industry throughout 2020 and how this might impact on 2021.
Homebrewing growing in popularity
All panellists agreed the pandemic had forced a sharp increase in home brewing, with consumers having the time to learn how to create delicious café-level coffee in their own kitchens – a factor Paul felt could influence behaviour change, adding: Coffee at home is starting to be really embraced by everyone. They have had time to build it into their routine. I think this will raise expectations when people go back to the High Street, and places will suffer as the customer thinks ‘I can make this at home’.”
Paul shared his thoughts around the impact this could have on the Big 3 UK High Street brands, predicting they would likely suffer most post-lockdown. “As people drink more at home and less from city centres their sales won’t recover, and we will see store closures as they will be slow to adapt to the changing landscape.”
Does this spell the end for café culture?
Paul doesn’t feel that this spells the end for café culture entirely, suggesting exciting opportunities lie ahead for suburban coffee shops that offer quality coffee to drink and buy and educate their customers in making great coffee at home. “This represents an opportunity for the local community coffee shop to catch that market. They could do the education in the café, simple, quick training on how to make coffee – that is what’s going to get that community seen.”
How roasters can stand out in the marketplace
With more than 250 speciality coffee roasters now online, Paul offered his thoughts on how to stand out in a crowded marketplace. “You’ve got to use language that customers understand – the customer wants to know how does this product solve my problem? How does this product do that? It might scare people off with fancy descriptions. Keep it simple. There will always be shiny gadgety stuff that comes along and draws people in but then gets shoved at the back of the cupboard and they’re back to their AeroPress. Simple and easy always works.”
The full webinar, hosted by Gemma Kiernan, Marketing and David Walsh, head of R&D, at Marco Beverage Systems is available here.