There are really three types of coffee prices:
Roasted whole-bean coffee behaves like a commodity in the consumer market. The price of this commodity is spiking right now for reasons involving seasonal speculation, reduced harvests due to fungus, low levels of coffee reserves in the US, and concerns about hoarding overseas. As a result of this market spike,
in cafes and grocery stores, the price of whole-bean coffee is going up by $0.50-1.00 per pound on average. This will affect not just the low-end but also higher-end coffees, like Peets. It will also affect Fair Trade certified coffees.
The Kinds of coffee that LostDog Deals with, blend or otherwise such as:
Finca Chicaman, Finca Aurelio y Lorena cost more than commodity-traded coffees to begin with. Direct-trade coffees are mostly sold at a fixed price; their price will not be affected by the commodities markets this year. Likewise the auction coffees sold through the Cup of Excellence and other such programs. Those coffees are in a class of their own that is decoupled from commodity pricing.
Coffee drinks. It is true that the cost to produce one very rich espresso shot (23 grams of coffee grounds, that’s a serious triple shot) has gone up by roughly $0.03 because of the recent increase in coffee commodity pricing. Big deal. This should not make anyone raise their prices. But please understand that when you’re buying an Espresso you’re buying a service, not a thing. Most of the cost to provide that service is not contained in what accountants call the Cost of Goods Sold (COGS). What you’re really buying is a nice stopover in a leak-proof, well-lit, comfortable cafe in a location you like, not to mention free WiFi, a comfy chair, free filtered water and clean, fully stocked toilets. And then there’s the barista who keeps the doors open, pours your drink, and maybe even lights up your day. Believe it or not, friendly, super-premium baristi like the ones at Seattle Coffee Works do NOT grow on trees.