In the United States, coffeehouses make up just a small sector of the vast food and drink industry which expected to see sales of around 782 billion U.S. dollars in 2016. Coffeehouses come in a variety of forms but, traditionally, they are small establishments selling prepared coffee, tea and other hot beverages. More recently, many coffeehouses compete with other restaurants in the limited-service category by serving baked goods, sandwiches, salads and other snack items.
Despite their small position the food service sector, global coffeehouse industry leaders are growing large enough to compete with the giants of the wider restaurant industry. Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse chain worldwide and its brand value rivals that of perhaps the most famous restaurant chain of all, McDonald’s. In 2016, the chain’s revenue reached a company record of 21.32 billion U.S. dollars and, after more than a decade of rapid expansion, the company had over 25 thousand stores worldwide. Other industry leaders, such as Canadian favorite Tim Hortons, while still relatively small, have also seen periods of expansion in recent years.
Around 155 million bags of coffee were consumed globally in 2016. In the U.S., almost 70 percent of consumers drink at least two cups of coffee a day, with around half drinking it to make them feel more awake. According to a national survey conducted by Nielsen Scarborough in spring 2016, over 36 million Americans had visited a coffeehouse within the past month. Popular coffeehouse chains among U.S. consumers include Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Caribou Coffee and Starbucks.
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