Cheaper Coffee Coming Your Way?

According to the New York Times today, the wholesale price of roasted coffee dropped 2.7% in January.  At the same time, dairy products dropped 7%.  In theory this should mean consumers will be able to spend less on their daily coffee, particularly if it is a milk-heavy drink.  We all know the chance of a price drop to consumers is unlikely, but at least now maybe our favorite coffee shops will have an easier time staying open and brewing high quality coffees.

8 comments to Cheaper Coffee Coming Your Way?

  • Why do you think that prices have dropped so much? Is it because demands is lower for “premium” items like coffee?

    For me, of course, coffee will never be a premium item; it’s a necessity.


  • Oh, and NetChick sent me, of course. :)


  • With the economy in its current state, how long do you think Starbucks will survive, even with the drop in cost? My guess is not that long. :(

    Oh and I miss the coffee cups from NYC (my home town).

    Thomas :)

    (NetChick sent me, too!)

  • Manhattan Roaster

    It’s an interesting question. I actually would not be surprised if Starbucks survives through the economic state, but do not see it reaching its former glory again. With the brand degrading there will be a lot of room for someone else at the top.

  • I suppose we need to take any good news we can find. It saddens me to see so many small businesses go under. Starbucks? Not so much. I’m much more a fan of the locally owned and operated coffee bar than I am the corporate, homogenized entity that doesn’t change from place to place.

    Perhaps the retrenchment of Starbucks will leave more room on the cafe landscape for independents to come in as the economy picks up. One can always hope, right?

  • Manhattan Roaster

    Carmi – Definitely. We are already seeing that in NYC, where smaller coffee shops are starting to take over with much higher quality (and usually a smaller menu). I actually think that in many ways Starbucks’ growth has been very good for the industry as a whole, and the company itself is not necessarily the “evil” corporation that many people think. But I think that right now people will get the most from these local quality-based shops.

  • Foodie Abroad

    I think we are kinda missing the point. I get that we are talking about roasted beans but it is important to consider that this drop in prices means producers are making even less money.

    We (consumers) rarely feel the impact of these commodity shifts (especially in the West). Last year when corn and wheat prices spiked, we (North Americans and Europeans) may have seen a slight increase in our daily lives, our bakeries felt the pinch, but agri-food companies (the big ones) reaped the benefits.

    When the prices fall, the same is true, our stores benefit slightly and a few of the savings are passed on to us but the people who grow our coffee beans, they suffer.

    If we want to drink coffee we need to respect the fact that someone has to grow and pick the beans and these people´s livelihood.

    just my two cents….

  • Foodie Abroad

    Manhattan Roaster… I agree. While I love to hate Starbucks I have heard from people who work directly with producers that Starbucks (and their mass popularisation of coffee) has had positive impacts for growers.

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