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Coffee Culture
Team Offbeat | 14 Jul

When and how did Britain become a nation of converted coffee drinkers? Gone are the days of sipping on a nice cup of tea from a china cup as more and more of us turn to coffee for our caffeine fix.

According to Mintel research, over the past five years the coffee shop market rose by 37%. Independent coffee shops are popping up all over London to compete with the likes of popular chains such as Costa and Caffè Nero. Coffee has become a culinary speciality product with independent shops offering chic artisan coffee using beans from across the world and Londoners are fully embracing the culture.

The popularity of café culture has been fuelled by cosmopolitan New York lifestyles seen in sitcoms such as ‘Friends’, as well as through advances in technology, with the introduction of Wi-Fi and the ability to work remotely using laptops.

Since then, a combination of an increase in pub closures, an increase in demand for on-the-go breakfasts and the rise of ‘foodie culture’ had led to a dramatic regeneration in our café culture with London leading the way.

So what’s the future?

While coffee shops in London remain culturally diverse, offering the classic Italian Espressos, American Americanos and Australian Flat Whites, we believe that it’s only a matter of time before Britain coins a term for its own unique coffee. London may soon see a more localised British-style type of coffee develop over the next few years as we continue to embrace the artisan coffee culture.

As well as this, sustainable and ethical coffee has become big business. Along with greater coffee consumption comes a heightened awareness of the problems associated with coffee production. Guilt-free, fair-trade coffee is firmly established in the market and continues to grow in popularity. As we become more sensitive to the issues, we will see increased support for ethical solutions and an increase in coffee quality as a result.

By Charlotte Anderson

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