Over the last 15 years, we’ve seen the global spread of flavoured coffee beverages made with syrups. Major chains such as Starbucks, Tim Hortons, and Dunkin’ Donuts have popularised these.
Simply put, syrups are used to impart an artificial flavour to coffee beverages, frequently sweetening them in the process. The exact flavour profile varies significantly, ranging from caramel and vanilla to strawberry and even florals such as lavender.
To learn more about the syrup market’s origins and why it has grown so rapidly, I spoke with two industry professionals. They informed me about the breadth of the market’s offerings and the impact of syrup use on the coffee industry in general. Continue reading to learn what they said.
According to the 2020 National Coffee Data Trends Report by the National Coffee Association, approximately 80% of US coffee consumers “customise” their beverages in some way. Around 7% of these make use of syrups.
By 2025, the global market for flavoured syrups is expected to reach US $65.6 billion, growing at an annual rate of more than 5% on average. There is an entire subsector of syrups produced specifically for the coffee industry within the market. This is referred to as the coffee syrups segment.
Andrea Ramirez is the Consumer & Customer Market Insights Manager at Torani Syrups, a San Leandro, California-based syrup manufacturer. Syrups, she asserts, assist in making coffee “approachable” for some consumers.
“They’re the component that adds indulgence and personalisation to a beverage, elevating it from a functional and routine beverage to a treat,” she explains.
According to research, many people begin drinking coffee by experimenting with milk or sugar, which may be more palatable at a younger age.
“You rarely see someone starting out ordering a double espresso as their first coffee beverage,” Andrea explains. “There is frequently a hint of sweetness, and possibly some dairy.”
Tamara Tato is the Iberian market sales manager for Kerry Group, which owns the DaVinci line of gourmet syrups. She asserts that global coffee chains with highly customizable menus have undoubtedly contributed significantly to the rise in popularity of syrups.
“They were instrumental in introducing new modes of consumption to the consumer in a number of instances,” Tamara explains.
Tamara notes that the coffee syrup category has been around for just over three decades. Demand has steadily increased during that time period.