A common request we get is simple asking for a coffee price, which is a bit like asking how much a car costs.
The answer is obviously, it depends on what you need.
When requesting a price, we'll need at minimum:
- Coffee origin chosen from here
- Quantity and package size required
- Roast level (green/unroasted, medium, dark, or espresso)
- Time frame (immediate, ongoing, or date in future)
- Shipping address (identifying commercial or residential) or FOB our Windsor facility
If you're trying to hit a specific dollar target please make that clear up front so that we don't waste our time quoting the wrong coffees.
If you want a good trade-off between quality and price, our existing inventory is your best option.
Please note that custom quotes will always exclude shipping costs. Custom quotes available for orders greater than 20-lbs per month or 40-lbs in a single purchase.
Emails requesting "please send me a price list" will be immediately sent to spam.
What costs go into sourcing coffee?
Every step along the way of sourcing a quality coffee comes with an associated cost and risk. Among the things that get factored into coffee prices:
- Financing of the pre-purchase of 45,000-lbs of coffee from the coffee market from 1 to 6 months prior to it arriving in our warehouse, and subsequently sitting around in various quantities for 2-3 months while being sold
- Hedging against changes in USD/CAD exchange rate and coffee market fluctuations - while coffee needs to be prepaid, prices can fluctuate over 50% within a 2-3 month period
- Sourcing and labour to sort through the 25-million coffee farms worldwide to find a reliable, quality supplier
- Shipping costs, broker and import fees
- Labour involved in unloading and breaking down containers of 70-kg bags into 1-lb or 5-lb quantities
- Warehousing with proper inventory rotation to ensure first-in-first-out cycling of coffees
- Equipment properly maintained for consistency between batches of roasts and continuous up-time
- Experience roasting thousands of batches of coffee to determine the proper temperature, time and roast level to bring out the unique distinctive characteristics of each origin
- Packaging costs of each individual 4-oz, 8-oz, 12-oz, 16-oz, 2-lb, 1-kg, 5-lb or bulk bag
- Quality control and labour involved in inspecting coffee that is received - removing unwanted debris (insects, sticks, rocks, etc) and rejecting unacceptable coffees (mould, rot)
- Traceability paperwork, and membership fees for programs such as Organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, Shade-Grown, Women's Coffee Alliance, and CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency)
If you're interested in purchasing coffee for retail, or to start a coffee brand, your best option is to simply source it from us.
The wholesale and distribution of coffee requires a massive up front investment, huge sales volumes and direct connections to the source.
Sourcing coffee is an extremely complex process, with trade-offs and potential for mistakes at every point.
While you can in theory get coffee for $2.00 per pound, here's what you'd get:
- You'll be ordering a minimum 10,000 lbs
- You'll pre-pay in cash
- You'll be paying shipping and brokerage fees on top, and you will need to have a loading dock
- Once we've been paid, we'll source it - this can take 4-8 weeks
- You don't have the choice of what type of coffee it will be
- You don't have a guarantee of freshness - many companies dump old coffee back on the market at below-market rates to get rid of it
- It will not be pre-processed - you'll be filtering insect parts, inorganic and other organic parts yourself
- You'll be signing a waiver absolving us of any liability and gagging you from ever revealing us as the source
Certified vs. Non-Certified Coffee
Coffees that carry certifications (eg. fair trade, organic, rainforest) come at a higher cost, but are not higher quality than any other coffee. These certifications are "feel good" marketing certificates, and have nothing to do with the quality of the beans.
Some certified coffees are actually less flavourful, because there's a smaller market to source from, and the restrictions placed on farmers means coffees often aren't given the same nutrients + fertilizer as non-certified coffees.
Certified coffees also aren't any healthier to drink - any pesticides and herbicides used in the coffee are incinerated during the roasting process.
The certified coffees are, arguably, healthier for the environment they're grown in however. The farmers also receive a marginally better price for their coffees, though this is only a small fraction of the premium the consumer pays.
- If you're looking for coffee that tastes good and is affordable, go for non-certified.
- If your customer base is willing to pay a premium for certifications, then buy the certified coffees.