A pound of wholesale arabica coffee beans has been selling for under $1 since March, the lowest price point in more than a decade. One pound of ground coffee will make about 48 cups.
But experts say consumers will still be paying the same price for a cup of coffee or latte in stores and cafes. While wholesale coffee prices have been dropping, coffee prices for consumers have actually been going up.
The latest update from the Brazilian Coffee Exports Council (CECAFE) indicated 2018 was another bumper year for the largest producer and exporter of coffee in the world. “Statistics show that Brazil maintained its world leadership position and signs are that 2019 will bring even better results,” said Nelson Carvalhaes, Chairman of the Brazilian Exporters Coffee Council.
CECAFE’s recent update is full of interesting trends and statistics for coffee producers, connoisseurs, and consumers alike. And given Brazil’s scale in the global coffee market, updates from CECAFE always act as a useful barometer on the health of our industry overall.
Amazon’s food and beverage category has posted $4.75 billion in sales so far in 2018, making it the online retailer’s fastest growing segment, according to Automatic Vending watch.
And coffee continues to lead category. According to Edge Market Share, coffee sales on Amazon have totaled more than $140 million so far this year – and are expected to increase.
If the first wave of coffee was defined as having packaged coffee available in the home in packaged formats, the fourth wave may be the idea of having premium coffee available everywhere, all the time.
“It all begins with the coffee shop,” says Michael Schaefer, Euromonitor, in Food Navigator USA.
World coffee production for 2018/19 is forecast 11.4 million bags higher than the previous year at a record 171.2 million primarily due to Brazil’s record output, according to the USDA’s “Coffee: World Markets and Trade” report, published June 2018.
With global consumption forecast at a record 163.2 million bags, exports are expected up in response to strong demand. Ending stocks are forecast to rebound following 3 years of decline.
When a Los Angeles judge earlier this month finalized a ruling that coffee sold in California must carry cancer warning labels, many California residents may not have paid much attention to yet another labeling requirement.
Ever since voters passed Proposition 65 more than 30 years ago, after all, Californians have watched the steady proliferation of vague statements about chemicals, cancer, and birth defects. They appear almost everywhere, from the windows of hardware stores to signs at Disneyland. They’re so abundant that Amazon even sells them as stickers in rolls of 500.
Many people have begun to ignore these labels because they’re so common and because the information they convey is almost useless.
So why am I concerned if they now also show up on coffee?
On Thursday, Republican leaders announced that the controversial border adjustment provision, which threatened to saddle coffee imports with duties that could have added as much as 20% to declared values, has been dropped from the proposed tax plan.
“While we have debated the pro-growth benefits of border adjustability, we appreciate that there are many unknowns associated with it and have decided to set this policy aside in order to advance tax reform,” House, Senate and White House leaders working on a tax plan said in a joint statement Thursday, CNBC News reports.
For roasters and producers, cold brew can lead to more bean sales at a time of year when demand traditionally slackens. The need to soak up extra supply is especially important with the price of arabica coffee futures in New York dropping as much as 21% in the past year, and the pace of demand growth in the U.S. forecast to slow.
The benefit of cold brew is twofold: it uses more than twice the amount of ground beans, and it does battle against the efficient single-serve pods that have whittled coffee use and waste.
In the 12 months ended in February, sales of cold brew in the U.S. were up about 80% over the prior year, according to estimates from Cedarhurst, New York-based researcher StudyLogic. Sales of hot coffee fell 3% over the same period. Americans drank 105 billion cups in the 12 months ended in May, StudyLogic Chief Operating Officer Samuel Nahmias said.
“As a regressive tax borne largely by consumers, the proposal can hurt […] hundreds of independent roasters, coffee shops, restaurants, retailers, and suppliers. Aimed at promoting a healthy diet, the tax would have the opposite effect if applied to coffee.” – William M. Murray, CEO, NCA
The Seattle City Council will vote on introducing a “soda tax” in the city on Monday. The measure would put a one-cent per ounce tax on sugary beverages, and would impact coffee as collateral damage. Furthermore, small businesses would be disproportionately affected.
The National Coffee Association has submitted the following letter to the City Council to express the industry’s strong position on how the tax would severely impact the local coffee economy and that coffee should be exempt should any soda tax be ratified.
Tell the Seattle city council that levying a soda tax on coffee would have unintended and unanticipated consequences for the coffee industry and local businesses. Send an email to email@example.com, or call 206-684-8888.
Comments? Share your thoughts in the comments below, or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.