Coffee consumption may drop significantly with younger generation

New market research suggests younger drinkers (18-24) are less likely to enjoy a cup of coffee than their older counterparts (45-55).

On September 27, the market research company NPD Group's Consumer Reports on Eating Share Trends (CREST) found Dunkin' Donuts is "the number one retailer in the hot regular/decaf plus flavored coffee and iced coffee categories" in the US and noted that more than 40 percent of young workers (aged 18-34) said "they can't concentrate as well without coffee" and "have lower energy if they don't drink coffee."

However new research from Mintel, a global media intelligence company, concluded on October 8 "that while 40% of 18-24-year-olds believe coffee improves their concentration, only 27% drink coffee on a daily basis."

To target younger drinkers Mintel's senior analyst Bill Paterson suggests new products are needed to "convert these younger drinkers to everyday users"; otherwise, "long-term growth may suffer."

The research shows 40 percent of 18-24-year-olds "prefer sweetened coffee drinks to plain coffee... compared to only 22 percent of 45-54-year-olds." And only 28 percent like the taste of plain coffee whereas "53% of 45-54-year-olds" drink their coffee black.

According to Patterson, two ways to attract daily young drinkers for the long-term are to develop new products that bring the "caffeine fix" home not just to cafes and capture the energy drink market as "young adults are somewhat more likely than over-55s to associate negative health consequences with coffee consumption."

Canada's health agency Health Canada "concluded that the general population of healthy adults is not at risk for potential adverse effects from caffeine if they limit their consumption to 400 mg per day," in a public statement on October 4.

The blogger EspressoGuy calculates "you can expect to find about 100 mg of caffeine in a shot of espresso, and about 130 mg of caffeine in a cup (around 8 oz) of coffee."

In 2008, 63 percent of the functional drink category belonged to energy drinks with Red Bull (available in 160 countries) the go-to brand (42 percent), and the importance of convenience was highlighted, according to the Institute of Food Technologists's 2010 Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety (CRFSFS).

The same review found "the U.S. energy drink industry is anticipated to more than double and reach an astounding $19.7 billion [€14 billion] in 2013, which is almost a 160% increase from 2008."

 

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