Cold drinks account for half Starbucks sales

Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said that sales of cold coffee and teas now account for about half of the company’s beverage sales. Younger customers in particular are buying those drinks throughout the day, he said, not just in the morning, he said.

We are being very focused on the things that we know matter the most,” Mr. Johnson said in an interview.

Hotter Climate allowing rich nations to grow coffee

Hotter temperatures are reducing the belt for quality coffee in the tropics but it’s also allowing traditionally colder zones to start growing the crop that they love to drink. Growing experiments are now firmly established in places such as Sicily in Italy, California in USA and Saudi Arabia, reports the WSJ.

Starbucks lattes nearly half cheaper in Latin America than Jamaica

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Mavis Bank, Jamaica–An independent study on Starbucks chains found that it costs nearly 50 per cent more to buy a latte in Jamaica than in other major coffee growing nations in the region, Colombia or Guatemala.

It costs US$3.30 in Jamaica but the same latte costs US$2.04 in Colombia and US$2.86 in Guatemala. All produce coffee, so why the disparity.

Colombia, formalised a policy which forced Starbucks to buy its coffee locally. As such all the coffee consumed in Starbucks Colombia comes from various coffee regions in Colombia. Jamaica does not have such a policy and this influences the pricing of coffee, as it imports all its beans. In fact Caribbean Coffee which holds the franchise for Starbucks in the island admitted that even the Jamaica Blue Mountainconsumed in Starbucks locally is reimported. Additionally, within a Starbucks in Jamaica, the cheapest origin branded beans are actually from Guatemala for roughly one-third the cost of Jamaica Blue Mountain. Cost conscious consumers gravitate to the cheaper product.

Finder, a non-aligned comparison platform and information service, curated the index, and ranked Jamaica at 43 among the 76 countries surveyed. It ranked Guatemala at 61 and Colombia as the third cheapest in the world.

A latte is made of one-third espresso and two-thirds milk with light foam on top.

The study itself has two components: a coffee cost comparison and a GDP valuation index. In Jamaica, the index showed that a latte is being sold at 6.01 per cent less than the expected coffee cost based on the country’s GDP per capita. In Colombia it found that the coffee is being sold for one-third more expensive than it should, when matched against its GDP per capita.

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Denmark offered the most expensive location for a latte at US$6.05 versus Turkey the cheapest at US$1.78. Geographically, Europe offered the most expensive cup of coffee, followed by Asia and the Americas.

In Jamaica, as Starbucks cafes get more packed, the locals which traditionally do not drink coffee are being weaned on lattes and caps and flat whites. What of the local farmer. Its not likely to change anything as the demand is for cheap quick coffee rather than the luxury provided from the Blue Mountains.

Consequently, the actual benefit of Starbucks in Jamaica is the subsidised Guatemala coffee and other blends. These imports are likely to affect the coffee trade balance in Jamaica as exports have flattened. But that’s the focus of a different article.

The Starbucks index is an informal way to measure the strength or weakness of local currencies for a common item against other countries. It’s supported by research that excludes variances that affect the cost of a coffee, like prices of raw beans, local labour costs and taxes.

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French press coffee back to earth

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Brewing with a coffee-press, known also as a french press or coffee pot, will offer an earthy brew in contrast to a pour over or percolator. The press will keep the oils and the full body flavor in every cup. The pour-over, led by minimalist styling of a Chemex, on the other hand, will enhance the brightness and fruitiness of the brew as it filters out much of the full body.

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For many, the preferred method of brewing depends on the flavours one wants to enchance. Coffee geeks wants drinkers to consider the ratio of coffee to water. Research advises drinkers that the ideal is a 1-to-14 or 1-to-15 mix. They speak about the type of water, the type of kettle, the weight of the coffee, the time to allow the coffee to seep. Everything except the coffee.

For many however coffee isn’t math but rather art. And while quality products are nice amenities, it is quality coffee that’s the most important. There are many ways to know quality coffee, an easy method involves avoiding bottom-shelf supermarket beans in favour of premium single estate coffee.

Regardless, at the crack of dawn, quality coffee remains the most important ingredient even above the brewing method.

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Deaf Can getting most exposure at Jamaica coffee festival 2019

Deaf Can! the not for profit coffee enterprise that trains deaf students in the art of coffee got the most exposure at the Jamaica Coffee Festival even above global brands Starbucks.Why– for a few reasons.First, patrons were not seeking out Seattle roasted coffee (or re-imported Jamaica coffee). So Starbucks prominent stall was largely empty. Largely ignored.Second, Deaf Can! assisted three companies which led the company to have three cobranded booths at a coffee festival. That resulted in them having arguably the largest floor space. Third , they offered a zany cold brew coffee made from peaberries. It represented one of the most innovative core coffee drinks on display.DeafCan is currently seeking to raise about $7.5 million from the Jamaica Social Stock Exchange to properly finance their coffee farm in Mandeville. Why not check out their business model here .Over 15 Jamaica coffee brands are represnted at the festival. Notable absent brands are Jablum and Wallenford. There was a cobranded Cannonball and Jablum stall but no marketing beyond a small Jablum banner.Love Jamaica Coffee but can’t be at the festival consider these coffees .

Brands to expect at Jamaica coffee festival 2019

The Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee festival 2019 takes place in the hills of the world renowned Blue Mountain this weekend. Everyone will congregate on historic grounds in Newcastle but what brands will come out in full force.

Expect all the large ones including Jablum, Wallenford, Coffee Traders, Country Traders, Jamaica Standard Products, and so on.

In terms of cafe popups expect Cannonball, Cafe Blue, Jablum & Wallenford, Coffee Roasters, Island Blue and of course Starbucks and more.

People should be most excited about the surprises: The smaller brands coming out in force to increase marketability and exposure such as Plantation Blue and Bawk coffee.  But we shall see this weekend at the coffee festival.

The festival under the patronage of the Ministry of Tourism aims to get locals and foreigners to experience three days of Jamaican food, coffee and culture along the Blue Mountain Culinary Trail. There will also be indigenous arts and crafts showcases, live Reggae music performances and tours to some of Jamaica’s best kept secrets.

Can’t be there but want to experience quality coffee. There’s always next year.

Click to buy

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Is Jamaica coffee worth the price

 

People are drawn to the balanced cup that real Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee (JBM) offers. It’s chocolatey brewing with natural spice and fruit tones without bitterness.

Jamaica coffee can be divided into two categories Blue and High Mountain. Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee comes only from the East of the island and usually costs US$50 per pound (450g) for roasted beans. High Mountain mostly from the west of the island usually sells for ÙS$25 per pound for roasted beans.

Blue Mountain is luxury beans the equivalent of a Louis Vuitton bag for coffee. The classic profile is layered moving from chocolate to spice to fruit tones without bitterness. High Mountain is functional and would represent a beauiful leather backpack without a brand name. The profile moves from deep chocolate to lighter chocolate and spice with slight bitterness.

 

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Some critics say that over the last 20 years with the rise of Starbucks and specialty coffee, other regions have improved quality and now offer cups with similar quality to Jamaica Blue Mountain. Jamaica finds its natural competitors that speciality coffee in Latin America and the Pacific. So is Kona coffee better than Jamaica coffee. Or is Guatemalan coffee better than Jamaica coffee. What about Colombian coffee. These beans usually cost half that of Jamaica Blue Mountain quality beans. That said, the profile tends to be a cross between Jamaica Blue and Jamaica High Mountain beans.  Two handbags of the same size says nothing about the quality and style. A Louis Vuitton handbag will always maintain its value due to its quality and taste, so too with Jamaica Blue Mountain.

So is Jamaica coffee worth the money? Well it depends. Yes if you can guarantee that the beans are 100% from Jamaica rather than blends. Blended coffee is basically 10 to 30 per cent Jamaica Blue Mountain with 70 to 90 per cent beans from other origins usually Colombia. Blends costs half the cost of JBM or about US$25 per pound but really drinkers are getting foreign coffee.

 

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Buying 100% JBM from reputable brands is essential. The best brands of Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee include:

1.Twymans

2.Amber Estate

3. Coffee Roasters Jamaica

4. Marley Coffee

5. Coffee Traders

6. Wallenford

6. Greenwich.

7. Jablum Gold

8. Island Blue

9. Stoneleigh

10. Plantation Blue

There are others and the list can adjust based on crop and batch quality. Here’s a list of the taste profiles of most of these brands along with fulfilment.

Coffee lovers might wonder why Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee is twice as expensive as High Mountain coffee.

Well Blue Mountain is in heavy demand in places like Japan where roughly 75 per cent of the total crop gets exported annually.  Additionally, the Blue Mountain growing region is entirely on steep slopes. That limits cultivation in an is already limited zone. Its 8 hours of daily mist and fog creates a natural green-house effect which slow ripens the beans. Comparatively High Mountain is grown on flat lands or lowlands which enables better economies of scale. But also the coffee isn’t in heavy demand in Japan like the JBM.

Click pic below to buy!

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Does Wallenford and Jablum ship coffee to my country

Sister companies Wallenford Coffee and Mavis Bank Coffee Factory want to be in every luxury store in the world. But quality takes time to find new markets.

Green beans are best handled by these companies directly but for roasted beans there are options. Each company ships roasted beans globally but they do so at prices which can at times be prohibitive. That’s where brokers enter the picture. Will a 8oz bag of coffee might sell for US$35 directly from these companies, resellers sometimes offer for US$25. Of course buy from sellers on platforms or websites with feedback and knowledge about coffee. Because most Jamaicans don’t drink coffee and think all coffee tastes great.

Jablum and Wallenford were distinct companies until recently acquired by a millionaire, whose officers restructured both companies under a new entity called Specialty Coffee Holdings. The strategy of the Specialty aims to increase green and roasted bean sales to new geographies with special care for China. They want China but they fear bean duplication and thus are searching for a large distributor and roaster.

Five years ago, Russia was a fastest emerging market but the sanctions and the drop in oil prices killed that market almost overnight. The strength of the Russian economy will one day rebound and we await its recovery.

Contextually Japan buys about 75 per cent of total output of coffee from Jamaica. But whats more the remaining 25 per cent sent to other regions actually fights with the some of the 85 per cent repackaged from Japan back to the world.

The Chinese are culturally tea drinkers, but coffee remains popular among youngsters and entrepreneurs which creates a market, particularly for the growing middle class.

Following the Western Financial Crisis in 2008, the Japanese market retracted from buying large supplies of Jamaica coffee. The efforts to market Jamaica coffee in USA and Europe proved difficult with limited budgets. While offloading excess goods in Jamaica would prove futile as the island drinks instant coffee and teas. Additionally, hotels are not required to buy Jamaica coffee.

The price of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee remains  at around US$27 per kilogramme in Japan for green beans,and US50 per kilogramme for roasted beans.