We recently reported on trends in cold brew tea and its parallels with coffee, so this week we’re taking a deeper dive into cold brew coffee trends!

Previously confined to summer months, cold brew and iced coffee is growing in popularity all year-round. This is particularly true of the under 30s, so this information is of particular interest to those managing university or college cafés. Allegra Project Café recently reported that frappuccinos and iced coffees are the most popular iced beverages in this age group.

How can you use these industry trends to improve the range of cold coffees you offer? Read on to find out!

What types of cold coffee are there?

Let’s start by defining the types of cold coffee.

Iced coffee: This is essentially a coffee that is made cold by using ice. A hot espresso shot is added to ice with cold milk. Cappuccinos, lattes, flat whites and many more favourites can be turned into iced coffee.

Cold Brew: Cold brew is made by steeping coffee grounds in water for several hours. The length of time is what causes the flavours, oils, sugars and caffeine to extract, as opposed to heat.

orange infused cold brew coffee

Then there’s Nitrogen fuelled coffee or nitro cold brew. This is where Nitrogen is added to cold brew coffee to create a wonderful foaminess, and a creamy taste. We’re seeing an increase in the popularity of all cold coffees, but the nitro cold brew is the new coffee on the block, so expect big things this year.

Ready to Drink Nitro Cold Brew

Colin Morrison, Director of Marketing at Tchibo Coffee Service says “There are more and more options now available for cold brew and nitro cold brew products in UK coffee shops and retail, demonstrating the potential for growth in this category amongst mainstream audiences”.

minor figures nitro cold brew

Nitro Cold Brew is growing in popularity and, as it comes in cans, it’s portable and the packaging is recyclable. Tins can usually be stored ambiently in your store cupboard but serve the nitro cold brew chilled. They are the perfect addition for your café or convenience store to keep your students and customers caffeinated on the go!

We love Minor Figures Nitro Cold Brew, which comes in three flavours; mocha, latte and black coffee. Find it in our Espresso Warehouse catalogue.

Iced Coffee

35% of under 30s choose iced coffees1, so if you aren’t offering iced coffee to your customers, you are missing out!

They are just as easy to prepare as your average coffee, just add ice! There are loads of recipes you can try to mix up your flavours too.

iced cappuccino

Given that under 30s are also the most likely demographic to request flavoured syrup in their drinks1, as well as request dairy-free alternatives to cow’s milk, you should also make sure you have these ingredients to hand. Oat M*lk and DaVinci Gourmet syrups are available in our Espresso Warehouse catalogue to add a flavour kick or make your cold drinks vegan-friendly.

Colin says “Consumers are interested in experimenting with more flavours and with the rise of social media, they are always looking for new and ‘instagrammable’ content”. Don’t neglect the look of your drinks! There are plenty of cups, glasses, sprinkles and straws to be found in Espresso Warehouse – make your drink look so appetising that customers can’t help but ‘gram it!

Other coffee trends to look out for

So, what else should you be looking out for to keep ahead of coffee trends among young consumers?

Coffee drinks are innovating around textures and ingredients2, so think coffee lemonade, cascara (a kind of tea made from the coffee cherry), as well as adding functional ingredients such as protein or vitamins.

Watch this space for more trends and news from the coffee industry!

Need some inspiration? Check out our summer drinks recipes page for delicious cold brew and iced coffee recipes, as well as some bonus smoothies and frappes!

Find out more about our work with universities and colleges here.

1. Allegra Project Café 2019
2. Market & Consumer Insights, Dӧhler, 2019

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