The British out-of-home (OOH) foodservice market will grow visits by 1.6% in 2016, according to global information company, The NPD Group (NPD).

NPD’s revised 1.6% forecast for 2016 is slightly higher than the 1.5% it predicted this time last year. It has also predicted a further 1.2% growth in 2017.

There was a 1.3% actual growth in OOH foodservice visits in Britain in 2015, which was the second consecutive year that the sector has recorded a rise in visits.

The total spend in the British OOH market was £52.2bn for the year ending December 2015. It was this strong performance that prompted NPD to revise its 2016 spend forecast up from £53.1bn to £53.5 bn. It says this will increase further to £54.7bn in 2017.

Its forecast for 2016 OOH visits is 11.4bn, a 1.6% increase over the actual figure for 2015. For 2017, 11.5bn visits are forecast, which is a small further increase of 1.2%.

NPD predicted 636 million coffee shop visits for 2015, which proved to be accurate, as was its forecast on coffee shop spending, with the actual figure coming in at £2.17bn, which was slightly above its £2.16bn forecast.

Its revised 2016 visits forecast is 656 million, or 3.1% over the 2015 actual figure, and NPD sees a further jump in visits in 2017 to 67m, which would be 2.7% over the 2016 figure.  This trend underlines the increasing fondness of British consumers for specialty coffee, and their growing willingness to treat themselves throughout the day.

Bigger improvement

Cyril Lavenant, NPD’s director of foodservice for the UK, said: “It’s good to see that there was a bigger improvement in 2015 than anticipated. …We are now forecasting 1.6% visit growth for 2016 due to increasingly confident consumers and a potential further boost from the UEFA EURO Championship and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.”