Keep quirky look for cafe success, garden centres told

A continuation of the 10 per cent increase in garden centre cafe sales in 2011 could be under threat if retailers lose their quirkiness, catering consultant Chris Brown has warned.

A HTA key points report, Garden Centre Catering - Growth & Success, launched this week shows that half of specialist garden retailers now offer catering, compared with 40 per cent in 2008.

In 2011, there were around 55 million visits to garden centre cafes. But customers aged under 45 said cafes need to continue to improve to sustain strong performance.

Brown said: "We've got so proficient we are starting to miss a little bit of that quirkiness and humour."

He used cafes from his blog as an illustration of ideas, showing living walls, grafitti art and unusual decor. He recommended Foxcroft & Ginger, Shoreditch Grind, Tebay Services, Cafe Coho, Leon and Albion Cafe.

Brown said garden centres were using suppliers too often and no making enough of their own food. He recommended open displays rather than covered. "People buy with their eyes, the same as plants," he added.


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Business Planning - strategic sourcing

Business Planning - strategic sourcing

Having a robust strategy to cope with potential supply shortages is important to protect any retail business, Neville Stein explains.

Latest garden retail company results: who has done best and why?

Latest garden retail company results: who has done best and why?

Medium-sized groups in the £20m-£100m bracket such as Klondyke, Hillier, Squire's, Notcutts and Blue Diamond look to have done best as 2017 results are released.

Maianthemum

Maianthemum

Showy spikes, lush leaves and sweet scent all help to sell these appealing plants, writes Miranda Kimberley.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES 2017

See our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world
 

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation
 

Read latest articles

PLANT SUPPLIERS GUIDE

Free to subscribers, the essential guide for professional plant buyers
 

Download your copy