Identi-tea crisis? Britain no longer synonymous with infamous 'cuppa' as coffee popularity surges

22 January 2024, 21:32

Coffee is more popular in the UK than tea, a study has found
Coffee is more popular in the UK than tea, a study has found. Picture: Getty
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

Brits are known across the world for their love of tea, but new data shows a change is brewing - coffee is actually more popular.

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While a cup of tea remains the most popular individual drink in the UK, coffee drinks are now overwhelmingly the UK’s favourite.

Nearly 60% of respondents in a new survey picked a coffee drink, compared with 24% who picked a time of tea.

As for who drinks tea, the classic cuppa is most popular in the south east of England, where 32% of people listed it as their favourite hot drink.

Meanwhile the North East (17%), Yorkshire and the Humber (16%) and East Midlands (15%) came bottom, about half as likely to choose a brew.

Coffee is more popular than tea, new data shows
Coffee is more popular than tea, new data shows. Picture: Getty

The research was undertaken by Openreach, whose engineers spend their lives on the road, going from house to house maintaining the nation’s broadband.

Research also found that the perfect shade of tea is actually a lighter shade of orange, despite 'builders brew' stereotypes.

People in the North East are most likely to choose a weaker tea, while Northern Ireland likes its brew remarkably strong compared to the rest of the UK.

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When it comes to the nation’s coffee habits, the Flat White (9%) is already nearly as popular as stalwarts Cappuccino (10%) and Americano (10%).

Glasgow is the Flat White capital of the UK – the Australian import is already as popular as a classic cup of tea there (16% v 16%).

In Wales, a Latte is significantly more popular than a cup of tea.

Meanwhile granulated coffee has fallen out of favour completely, with data showing that only 3% of people would pick it, except in Plymouth where it remains somewhat popular (7%).

How dark do you like your tea?
How dark do you like your tea? Picture: Getty

“Openreach is thousands of people from all walks of life who are the driving force behind the UK's largest broadband network”, said Matt Hemmings, Managing Director of Fibre and Network Delivery at Openreach.

“Each month, our field engineers make more than 500,000 visits to homes and businesses, giving them a unique window into life in the UK.

“This report shows that no two days are the same. While they’re out there tackling complex engineering problems they’re also making customers happy, in more ways than just getting them online, which we simply love."