Happy new year to you all. As I write this I know that 2021 has started with yet more uncertainty. Lockdowns across the UK and Ireland may have closed your doors once more, or reduced your service to take-away only. But this time at least, you face the situation with plenty of experience, and most importantly, a possible end in sight. As the vaccines are rolled out we all wait, in eager anticipation, for a return to ‘normal’ trading.

The very concept of what ‘normal’ means is up for debate of course. Some of you may face a permanent shift in footfall and the need for innovation or change within your business model, whilst others may have benefitted from the new ways of working and hope that this continues. Whatever your circumstances, rest assured we are here to support you and your individual business needs.

Given our shared challenges, it is always particularly heartening to hear stories from customers who have been able to outwit the pandemic. This month we feature one particularly successful cafe; Kaya in Horsham, the perfect example of how hospitality businesses can thrive during the toughest of times. From facing lockdown just a week after their launch party, to selling 400-600 takeaway coffees per day, and adding an interior design arm to their business, COVID was no match for owners Candy and Benita.

In other articles, we analyse the latest consumer research to help you prepare your drinks menu, we share sustainability insight from KeepCup's co-founder Abigail Forsyth, and no issue would be complete without some fascinating commentary from our Head of Coffee, Dr Eduarda Cristovam.

As always, we hope you find this an insightful and useful read and we welcome your feedback and requests for future articles. All that remains is for me to wish you the very best for the year ahead, whatever challenges we may face.

Ewan Reid, Managing Director