Every year we see new coffee trends or trends that rise and fall: this reflects our habits and that’s mostly due to developments and changing demands within the coffee industry.
COFFEE TRENDS IN 2021
So, new year new coffee trends you would think. In fact, we lived intermittently for more than a year in under a few lockdowns. The good thing though is the recent lockdown ease in the UK and several different European countries and, luckily for us, it’s again time to experience the vibes that London coffee shops have to offer.
Obviously, there aren’t coffee trends in 2021 worth mentioning as this unprecedented time has dramatically impacted the coffee industry, kind of stagnating the coffee industry.
However, coffee trends in 2021 will be the ongoing uptrend of what was trending in 2020.
I put here a list of what will clearly having an impact also during this year.
1 – PLANT-BASED MILK – OAT MILK
Breaking every record year after year, oat milk will be the most popular choice not only in the Uk but worldwide. Starbucks has recently made a new partnership with the Swedish Oatly launching 2 oat milk-based beverage in its menu nationwide in the U.S. The green mermaid has seen such a tremendous demand for it that it took only a month to experience a temporary shortage of oat milk.
This confirms how oat milk is seen as the first customer choice for a non-dairy milk beverage and so the confirmation again as one of the most popular coffee trends also for this year.
The trend will rise exponentially mostly for the fact that people increase awareness of what’s going on to the planet, increasing any plant-based milk to stop abusing cows.
2 – COFFEE SUBSCRIPTIONS
COVID-19 has changed our habits and brought the coffee experience to the home. Even though the ease of lockdown has allowed us to go back to our favourite coffee shops, coffee subscriptions are here to stay with us. Coffee subscriptions are having great momentum thanks to these challenging times: people get used to it, discovered how easy it is to subscribe for coffee; it owes its success for its flexibility, wide selection and fast delivery.
On top of these, people like the fact that you do not need to be a loyal customer so forget about that, you can jump from a roastery’s website to another and get whatever coffee you like.
This is extremely important to highlight as anyone of us has their favourites roasteries but sometimes want to try different coffee subscriptions even from another country.
Right now in London, there are several coffee subscriptions in which you can choose how you want your coffee to be (beans or grounded), according to your favourite brewing method and how many times you want it to be delivered.
Subscribing for a coffee subscription will be definitely a popular coffee trend in 2021 and it’s likely to grow in the following months not only for home use but also for the offices.
3 – RTD (READY TO DRINK) COFFEE
Ready to drink coffee is here to stay for obvious reasons. Any drinks that have already been prepared and bottled will be a win. They don’t require any preparation, saving time when customers pop in and are most likely to taste great. Some examples of popular coffee-based RTD in London are any cold brew drinks from Sandows. And not to mention, this formula will works also for any coffee-based cocktails and beers: easy to keep refrigerated, a smart way to increase a coffee shop’s income.
Also, do not forget that RTD drinks are becoming more and more sustainable and, especially during these challenging times, can help avoid any cross-contact with surfaces.
4 – NEW TECHNOLOGIES
Similar to the RTD, contactless payment systems, table service systems and click and collect orders are being pushed even more than it was in 2019. Keeping baristas and customers safe is being obviously prioritised, ending interactions during any purchase while allowing businesses to keep their doors open.
Innovation and technological adoptions will keep growing, making them one of the coffee trends in 2021 to watch out for.
5 – COVID-19 precautions
We can’t predict for how long this situation will last, but COVID-19 is definitely here to stay throughout the year. Screens instalment, face masks, the use of hand sanitiser and the previously mentioned contactless payments, are all part of these precautions. Right now, these two trends above are surely the most important thing to look at than any other coffee trends in 2021.
COFFEE TRENDS IN 2021 – CONCLUSION
As you can see, nothing news about coffee trends in 2021 but just reconfirmation of what will keep trending up.
Looking at the bright side of things, coffee shops will have to raise their standard to address people expectations. During this time, home consumers grow consistently and are more conscious about making tasty coffee. Baristas have now to give more guidance to them about the single-origin coffee beans to sell, water treatment, coffee gears and recipes to try at home.
This will bring more value to the speciality coffee industry, and that’s why I think it’s the best time to open new independent coffee shops (along with making great food) in the suburban areas. Finding possibly great formulas with roasteries to get the most out from (coffee) equipment, diluting payments (cost savings).
I am an Italian coffee lover that pushed for the love of this “amazing drug” decided to come to London to study about coffee and its different extraction procedures and tastes.