Price Watch: April

4 May 2018

Staying cool as it heats up

Welcome to Price Watch, our monthly study of high street coffee trends and prices. In a month that’s seen prices remain static, the recent spate of sun that’s graced much of the UK has brought with it the customary change in focus for POS. We’re seeing frappes and iced coffee front and centre on boards, window displays and menu imagery.

Meanwhile, the single-use cup conversation continues to make headlines. Costa has pledged to recycle up to 500m coffee cups a year until 2020, a move that sees them financially incentivise waste companies to take the extra steps to keep cups out of landfills. Elsewhere, small independent chain Boston Tea Party has gone so far as to blanket ban single use coffee cups in favour of a re-usable alternative as of June.

With both companies setting a precedent for the industry to follow, it will be interesting to see the longevity and business impact of the two plans. While Costa’s plan will cost them, it will go a long way to lessen the impact of the 2.5bn takeaway cups wasted each year, without infringing on customer convenience. However, relying solely on reusable cups puts cost and hygiene implications on customers. It will be a working case study in whether customers’ interest in sustainable business practices is enough to supersede cost and convenience, maintaining footfall and sales.

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