Britons famously love their tea but sales have fallen by more than a fifth since 2010, driven by a shift away from the traditional cuppa, a report said recently.

Tea sales by volume fell by 22% between 2010 and 2015 to about 76 million kilos from 97 million kilos, according to market research firm Mintel.

Sales of bags of black tea – the cheapest version known as “builder’s tea”, commonly drunk with milk – fell by 13% between 2012 and 2014 to £425mil (RM2.6bil).

“Standard black tea is struggling to maintain consumers’ interest amid growing competition from other drinks, held back by a rather uninspiring image,” said Mintel analyst Emma Clifford.

However, fruit and herbal tea are becoming more popular with sales rising 31% to £76mil in the same period, reflecting a growing “foodie” trend in Britain.

Another reason for the trend could also be that tea is often drunk alongside a biscuit or cake – sweet snacks that many people are now eschewing over health concerns.

“Given the sugar scare, and that usage of such treats is in decline, these strong associations could have had a negative impact on the tea market,” Clifford said.

Tea still remains the drink of choice for many Britons, however, with 54% of people surveyed saying they drank it at least once a day. – AFP Relaxnews