Several of the daily press have seized on the fast-food chain's proposal to have 1,200 of the cafes operating across Europe by the end of this year, and a senior manager's remark that McDonalds could become ‘the biggest seller of coffee across Europe', as confirmation that McCafé will appear in Britain.
McDonalds has already been reported as preparing to spend £66million in an American promotional push against Starbucks, and the business press here has been hoping for a similar confrontation.
However, the head of McCafé in Europe, Vicki Fuller, has confirmed that McDonalds has no plans to open the dedicated café brand in the UK.
"The UK market has no immediate plans to open McCafé," she told us. "The coffee strategy is to continue to grow the successful platform of espresso-based coffees sold at McDonald's. This has included the introduction of a Rainforest Alliance blend, and investment in coffee machines."
In America, McDonalds has said that the launch of McCafé there has already exceeded expectations.
In a campaign against Starbucks
Starbucks has reacted with a campaign that includes the slogans: 'Starbucks or nothing - compromise leaves a really bad aftertaste', and 'beware of a cheaper cup of coffee - it comes with a price'.
By Ian Boughton