Canadian Vending

Features Consumer Behaviour Trends
Study claims decline in coffee pods by 2028

New study by food and agribusiness financial service provider Rabobank states that millenials’ current beverage habits will change the way coffee will be sold within a decade from now.

“The coffee market will be in a completely different place in ten years,” says Jim Watson, senior beverage analyst at Rabobank, in a press release. “Those companies that build brands, create sticky consumer connections, and best leverage the healthy attributes of the coffee bean, will be positioned to capture more than their share of the growth.”

The study cited three cornerstones for the research: The desire for natural, traceable and sustainable beans, the blurring of product category lines and an addiction to smartphones. Watson states that these factors will change coffee consumption most in North America and Western Europe.

One of the biggest trends across beverages is the shift towards drinks that are more natural and environmentally friendlier. In a study called, “How Coffee Will Look In Ten Years,” Rabobank gathered data which studied startups that are entering the market, and through consumer survey data. The company noticed that consumers are more involved in choosing their coffee, and many prefer a branded drink option to a coffee pod delivery system.


Gauging the reaction to unbranded soft drinks, the study stated that unbranded coffee is “out of place,” stating the relative lack of private labels in beverages compared to other consumer food categories. Rabobank compared the soda and alcohol segments, where most developed market consumers would have a branded option at “virtually every occasion,” and as such, coffee was heading towards a more aggressive branding trend, and for many non-alcoholic drink companies, represents a strong vending opportunity: Many young consumers see coffee as another alternative soft drinks or juice.

The last factor the study listed as being hugely dependent on smartphones. With loyalty apps, subscriptions and various order delivery methods at their fingertips, having a strong digital presence is seen as a strategic advantage for coffee brands such as Starbucks or Tim Hortons. Watson cited a study by Experian, stating that millennials spend more time “interacting with their phones than with the people around them.”