Serving your customers a cup of tea with a cheap and ugly paper tea bag is somewhat akin to serving your coffee customers an instant coffee – you absolutely should not do it!
Customers are becoming more and more knowledgeable about tea and they really really really don’t want to settle for a bland brew. While the beloved "Builder's Brew" will always be a British favourite, customers are looking for a gastronomic experience and expect greater variety on a menu including green tea, white tea, oolong tea, cold brew tea and iced tea.
Consumers are also becoming increasingly selective about their dietary choices. The health and wellbeing trend is particularly prominent amongst millennials so offering a range of premium teas is an easy way to attract a younger audience to your coffee shop. Uplifting and refreshing fruity tea blends appeal to those customers who are looking to lower their caffeine intake. Indeed, herbal teas grew 9.6% year-on-year from 2016 to 2017.
It goes without saying that loose leaf tea is absolutely the way forward. Nearly one-third of people (29%) are drinking more loose leaf tea out-of-home than they were just one year ago. The love the ceremony and drama around brewing and pouring tea from a beautiful teapot when tea becomes more than just tea – it becomes an experience with oodles of ‘instagramability’.
Loose leaf tea gives operators the flexibility to be creative with their tea range throughout the year, establishing a seasonal offer by adding vibrant fruity teas in the summer and warming spiced teas in the winter.
World-renowned tea specialist, Jane Pettigrew BEM, also predicts that it won’t be long before Brits are drinking nitro tea. She said that having a fantastic tea offer can win coffee shops recognition. “With social media, people are on Instagram and posting about places that they go to find a really good cup of tea”.