RESEARCH | Staff Reporter, Australia

Remote kiosks, cashless transactions: automation forecasted to shape coffee industry

Hygiene will remain a priority for customers.

Advancing technology and innovation is expected to be crucial for coffee businesses, with a new report from Seven Miles Coffee Roasters predicting automation will lead the coffee industry in the coming years.

Its Café 2025 trends forecast highlighted key movements that are likely to take place in the industry within the next few years, such as the adoption of ‘fast’ coffee, referring to coffee made with machine assistance, rather than being barista-driven.

“This is a massive avenue for growth moving forward, and those who adopt these systems early are likely to grow at a prodigious rate,” Adam Carr, Head of Coffee Science and Education Centre (CSEC) at Seven Miles, said.

Hygiene is expected to be a priority for consumers, with restaurants encouraged by Carr to be “loud and proud in their hygiene standards and adherence to COVID-19 social distancing guidelines.”

“The sensitivity of operators to time, security and, now, hygiene would see a natural movement of operators towards remote payment systems which are cashless, convenient and have the potential to efficiently feed more feet through the door of the café,” he added.

The report also sees automation as a solution to potential concerns surrounding sustainability amidst restrictions, along with a “Near-tsunami-like wave” of customers seeking to buy and use coffee at home.

“Australians' love of coffee is one thing we have been sure of during these unprecedented times. Based on our modelling, we predict the café industry to bounce back stronger than ever. While some hospitality venues may have closed, many have adapted during the pandemic, and those who were able to weather the storm will thrive once restrictions are lifted,” Carr explained.

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