Douwe Egberts is hoping
to get consumers to switch from standard instant coffee and powdered speciality drinks to its new liquid coffee range, which promises a vastly improved drinking experience.
Called Café Switch, the newcomer is an ambient liquid coffee that comes in squeezable sachets for a drink Douwe Egberts said closely replicated that which is bought in cafés.
Available in all of the major multiples from next month, in True Kick, White Innocence and Creamy Pleasure varieties, it can
be added to hot water to make a traditional coffee
or latte or to cold water to make an iced coffee. It is available in packs of six, which retail at £1.99, and singles, which cost 45p.
MD Grant Rosewarne said the launch would reinvigorate the coffee category, which he described as struggling from a lack of innovation, and would bridge the gap between instant coffee and roast
"We need to turn a
slow category into one of
dynamic growth. We are putting a lot of effort behind our NPD plans."
According to figures from TNS, standard instant is still by far the largest category
in the coffee market but is only showing value growth of 1.8% year-on-year (52 w/e 18 June 2006). In contrast, instant speciality coffee
is the fastest-growing
coffee category, up 18.7%
to £90m, driven by shoppers buying into the category more frequently and
Douwe Egberts is no stranger to the liquid coffee market. In 1998 it launched a chilled product called Cafinesse, which Rosewarne admitted failed to take off because it couldn't be kept with the rest of the hot
However, he said he was confident that the ambient nature of Café Switch would overcome this problem and would create a booming liquid coffee category.
"Coffees that are
made with powder have
a powdery taste, but you don't get this with a liquid product. I predict it will
be much larger than the powdered speciality
segment in the future."