Predictions for 2011 – Analysis

These posts seem to roll around awfully quickly. I suppose I enjoy them because they are a chronicle of what I was thinking about a year ago. Here’s the 2011 predictions post.

OK – time to see how I did:

1 – Scales in Drip Trays

We saw La Marzocco show a Strada with these in at SCAA and at HOST. Aside from that they haven’t really spread much further (yet – I hope!). Not really sure this is a failure of a prediction, nor a success.

2 – C-market will peak, but won’t drop back too far

I think we have seen a peak (for now), and looking at the graph of the last 2 years I’d say that my (fairly safe) prediction was accurate.

3 – The WBC Prediction

I’ll need to break this one down:

This is going to be hard to quantify, but I think holding the WBC in a producing country will have a rejuvenating effect for those involved in the competition. I think it will be a great event and I hope people take full advantage of it being in a coffee producing country.

I think this was pretty accurate.

Also I think the Scandinavians will be back in contention again.

Unfortunately this was not. I’m still going to try and claim the point!

4 – A focus on service

This was certainly on my mind a lot this year, and I very much enjoyed the opportunity to talk on the subject at SCAA’s Symposium and at the splendid Tamper Tantrum Live event. I’m not really sure if there was an uptick on the focus on service in the rest of the industry though. I’ll leave this one to you….

5 – More Brewed Coffee in the UK

I can’t work out if it is a good tactic to keep predicting things that are really difficult to quantify. This would fall into that category. We’re certainly roasting more coffee to be drunk as brewed coffee rather than espresso, I see more places including it in their offering and I see a small increase in interest in doing batch brewed coffee really well. I think it has definitely grown more than slowed down. You may disagree.

So. I guess I am claiming 3 or 4 out of 5 correct. Please disagree angrily with me in the comments. I will try and post up a new set of predictions in the next few days.

7 Comments

  1. You’re roasting more coffee to be drunk as filter rather than espresso – this year,  or generally the amount is always greater?

  2. This year about 30% of the coffee we sold retail (beans in bags) was roasted for filter. That’s massive for us and I think it could be 40-50% this year. It’s come from mostly asking the customer how they will be using it and recommending the right bean. Plus actully having 2 different roast levels, which doesn’t happen much here.

  3. Sorry – the percentage of filter coffee that we roast of our total production has increased.  i.e. it has grown disproportionately to our overall increase in production.

  4. Interesting.  Our retail bag split was (on average over the last two months) 48% filter / 52% espresso.  However the bulk of our production is espresso for wholesale.

  5. We have increased our retail filter offering by 100% since September, and it shows no sign of slowing down. I’m also seeing more and more particularity in the customer’s choice in what they will enjoy at home; not only distinguishing by country of origin, but of varietal and process. 

  6. I wonder how much filter-roast coffee sales increases have been driven solely by consumers demanding this particular product. It seems possible that simply producing a product that is better suited to the brew method a majority of people are using at  home, then asking pertinent questions at the POS, then of course we’re going to sell more of that product. 

    Like contemplating an explosion in sales of bottle openers when until now people have been using the back end of a cigarette lighter. It works, but just not very well.

    On the other hand, a whole market segment may have been drinking mediocre coffee until relatively recently. Now, with us catching up, this group is beginning to see the possibilities in that little french press grandma gave them. Which is a nice idea.

    Just thinking aloud.

  7. While I won’t say that our industry has a focus on service, I do think it’s starting to be thought of more and an indication of this may be the SCAA/BGA certification requirement on customer article. Of course, this won’t help or change the typical 3W cafe but maybe the next gen of customer centric progressive Cafes will push them out of business .

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