Hot demand for "coffee shop experience" at home in Germany

April 20, 2016
4 min read

Starbucks announced plans to open several cafés within Rewe super- and hypermarkets in 2016, potentially increasing the important lifestyle factor within the retailer’s stores across Germany. The cafés will offer the usual Starbucks range of coffees, teas and espresso drinks, as well as other food and drink for consumption either in-store or on-the-go.

The need for more aspirational, lifestyle oriented concepts appears more relevant than ever, as almost half of Germans say that within the past year they have switched to drinking coffee at home more in order to save money. But despite being frugal, German coffee lovers don’t just settle for any coffee at home. Indeed, the growing appetite for the “coffee shop lifestyle” has significant influence on consumer demands: one in four Germans would like to replicate the coffee shop experience when drinking coffee at home, rising to almost half of younger consumers aged 16 to 24.

Consumers have shown particular interest in coffee capsules, which offer the easy and convenient preparation of specialty coffee with premium and diverse flavours at home. According to Mintel research, half of German consumers consider the quality of coffee pods or capsules to be just as good as fresh coffee bought in a coffee shop.


Fragrante Coffee Capsules    Cappuccino Iced CoffeeCappuccino


Lifestyle is also the key driver behind a growing level of innovation in Germany’s ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee sector, with products designed to mimic the coffee house experience via the characteristic to-go cup format and a diverse range of indulgent flavours. RTD coffee has particular appeal as a to-go option for younger consumers, with two in five Germans aged 25 to 34 claiming to be interested in these offerings.

Coffee shop factor extends to traditional segments

While still dominating the coffee sector, the whole bean and instant coffee segments have struggled to overcome their predominantly conservative approach – especially in comparison to modern formats such as capsules and RTDs. But the time might be ripe for change, as products carrying lifestyle-oriented cues are appearing on the scene.


Instant Double Choc Cappuccino     Medium Roast Coffee Beans          Instant Sweetened Cappuccino


Melitta’s “Mein Café” roasted beans range, for example, is said to be inspired by the craftwork and quality of consumers’ “favourite coffee shops”, with advertising materials, including TV spots, using a café background to create a suitable and stylish feel-good atmosphere. Nestlé’s “Nescafé Coffee Shop Specials” range, meanwhile, was redesigned in 2015, with the new packaging driving attention much stronger to the “coffee shop” message. Outside Germany, an interesting example comes from the UK’s Morrisons private label coffee mixes brand, with the range openly claiming to deliver “coffee shop flavour and frothiness without the fuss”.

Going forward, coffee brands will have to show personality to connect with spoilt-for-choice consumers. Embracing changing consumer needs, new coffee formats have revolutionised drinking habits, but a lifestyle-oriented approach could also bring a positive boost to traditional coffee segments. As the overall coffee sector is evolving with a greater focus on quality – such as origin, processing and preparation – it is the perfect moment for lifestyle-oriented offerings to raise their game and combine a modern image with added value messages.

Join Mintel’s Food and Drink Analyst Julia Buech at Kaffee Kongress 2016 as she unveils product innovations and trends in the coffee sector in a 30 minute presentation on April 27th at 12.10 pm. 

Julia Büch is a Food and Drink Analyst at Mintel. She specialises in delivering insights on issues affecting the German food and drink market, providing analysis across a range of food and drink categories. Previously Trend & Innovation Consultant at Mintel, Julia was responsible for providing tailored product innovation analysis and client support primarily to Mintel’s German speaking clients.


Julia Buech
Julia Buech

Julia Büch is a Food and Drink Analyst, specialising in delivering insights on issues affecting the German market, providing analysis across a range of categories.

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