Restaurants can't afford to miss out on the cold brew coffee trend.

Over the past decade, cold brew coffee has increasingly appeared on menus, while iced coffee’s growth has declined. By 2027, it’s expected that cold brew will surpass iced coffee in menu penetration. Datassential has also predicted that cold brew coffee will outperform all other foods and beverages in growth over the next four years. 

The popularity of cold brew among millennials and Gen Z, who prefer cold over hot beverages, is a significant driver of this trend. According to the Technomic Beverage Consumer Trend Report, cold beverages have seen faster growth than hot ones, a trend likely to continue. 

However, it’s not just about catering to a trend. These groups drive the demand and are willing to pay a premium for a superior coffee experience. “Iced coffee is just hot brewed coffee served over ice. It has a more acidic and bitter flavor,” says Jillian Hermanowicz, vice president of corporate marketing and communications at FFP. “Because of the process, cold brew coffee has a smoother, less acidic flavor profile. Iced coffee has lost its “wow” factor and that is reflected in its diminished year-over-year growth. Today’s consumers want cold brew and they’re willing to pay more for it.”

Javo Beverage Company, part of FFP’s portfolio, provides high-quality cold brew solutions to the foodservice industry. Their patented extraction process ensures consistent flavor in every batch. Javo’s product offerings, including cold brew concentrates in bag-in-box and hand-mix formats, make it easy for quick-service restaurants to add this popular beverage to their menus.

Restaurants not incorporating cold brew coffee into their menu could be missing out on a significant revenue stream. “Coffee chains own the majority of the cold brew share today. If restaurants are not serving cold brew, then consumers will buy it somewhere else,” says Christopher Johnson, president of foodservice at FFP. 

The data and trends all point to a future where cold brew is not just an option but a necessity for quick-service restaurants looking to stay relevant in a crowded market. “The menu penetration of cold brew is at its infancy,” Johnson says. “It is only on about 12 percent of all menus so there’s a tremendous runway for growth, especially beyond coffee chains.”

“We make delicious, barista-quality beverages that are easy to implement,” Johnson says. From our ‘off the shelf’ items available at Dot Foods to private label, and custom beverage innovation we have solutions for every restaurant. It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach with Javo. We work with our customers to ensure they have the offerings that give them a differentiating point in quality and flavor giving them a competitive edge.” 

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By Olivia Schuster

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