Franchise Spotlight: Smoothies & Juice Franchises
The juice and smoothie bar sector has great growth prospects. Find out more about the industry.
The UK juice and smoothie bar sector has grown rapidly in recent years – albeit from a low base. These franchises have been a fixture in the US for a while now, particularly health-conscious places like California, however, the market is relatively young this side of the Atlantic.
Fuel Juice Bars Ltd, which has grown from eight stores in 2011 to 39 in 2017, is one business whose trajectory has mirrored that of the wider sector.
The market is concentrated in London but there’s enormous scope for growth within and beyond the capital.
- Growing popularity built on the increasing demand for on-the-go yet healthy food and an increasingly health-conscious consumer
- Millennials and generation Z are likely to fuel further growth in the coming years
- You could be based in a busy high street or shopping centre or dispensing smoothies from a van at parks, festivals and commercial hubs
Several trends augur well for continuing strong growth in the smoothie and juice bar sector. First, Brits are becoming more health-conscious, with 72% of shoppers now buying healthy food.
More promisingly still, millennials and Generation Z behind them are arguably the most health-conscious of all age groups. They go to the gym more than their elders did at their age and the reverse seems to apply to pubs, particularly with generation Z.
As they enter the job market and their earnings rise, already strong growth in this sector could conceivably accelerate.
Smoothies are ideal for the time-poor professional. They can be consumed on the go, entailing neither crumbs nor cutlery, and some options are so packed with nutrients – from vegetables as well as fruit – they can effectively replace or at least delay a meal.
For instance, ‘The Hulk’ at Fuel Juice Bars packs in kale, spinach, banana, peanut butter, vanilla soy milk and fat-free vanilla frozen yoghurt.
Smoothie bars have capitalised on the popularity of nutrient-rich ‘superfoods’ like spinach, berries and sweet potatoes.
Menus might also include milkshakes, yoghurt smoothies, frozen yoghurt and tea and coffee. Some sell health supplements and healthy snacks too.
Is a smoothie & juice franchise for me?
You won’t necessarily need a background in food service, management or running businesses – that depends on the franchise system in question. An aptitude for working briskly with a friendly demeanour is certainly a vital attribute.
Having the passion to run your own business and believing in the product, though, is a must!
The structure of smoothie & juice franchises
A smoothie or juice franchise might be premises-based, taking advantage of high footfall on a busy high street or in a shopping centre. Or it could be a mobile franchise, where you drive to wherever the business is – whether that’s a festival, busy park or commercial district – thereby eliminating the running costs of premises.
In return for full training, the benefit of national marketing campaigns and other ongoing support, you must pay the franchisor one or more fees, either fixed or as a percentage of sales or profits.
Requiring a few, unskilled staff and small or no premises – many customers favour takeout – smoothie and juice franchises are neither expensive to buy nor have overly burdensome overheads. Smoothies are easy and quick to make too so you can turn over customers fairly rapidly.
Food hygiene and health and safety regulations naturally apply, but the industry is otherwise not encumbered by onerous regulations.
When you’ve found a franchise you like, here are some questions to underpin your research and put to the franchisor:
arethe brand’s USPs? It might be organic ingredients, low prices or a particularly strong social media following, for instance
- What is their marketing strategy? How effective are their social media platforms? Through what other media do they advertise, how extensively and to what effect?
- How much can you expect to earnin profit in years one, two and beyond based on the performance of other
- What fees does the franchisor charge?
- What support will they provide around finding premises, fit-out, training of you and your staff, staff recruitment, marketing and other areas of the business?
- Can you speak to any existing franchisees?