Pret a Manger is to invest in barista training, it has been reported.

Speaking at M&C Report’s Restaurant Conference this week Mark Palmer, marketing director, said that the chain’s coffee offering will be given the same treatment as Pret’s food.

He said: "We will be giving coffee a similar treatment to the Pret food treatment, that is not about advertising, but about investing in barista training and back counter presentation. There will be some marketing outside of the stores, but 95% of that spend will be at shop level making it work in that environment.”

This follows recent criticism from Pret’s former managing director, Andrew Walker, who said that the brand’s coffee "needs a bit of thinking".

Speaking at the lunch! show 2013, Walker commented that Pret should consider developing a coffee “fast lane”, or a separate area for consumers to wait for their order.

A survey published by Which? in July this year described Pret’s Americano coffee as “plain, thin with too much water” and “smelt of burnt charcoal”, scoring three out of 10. Its coffee expert also felt that Pret’s cappuccino was “served with too much milk, which had been over-heated by the steamer, giving a caramelised taste”.