In Episode 94 of the Orange Cactus Coffee Podcast, Mike and I talked about a few articles that were popular out there on the inter webs. First Clint Rainey, from Grub Street, told us there is a glut of Third Wave Coffee Shops that are eating each other alive. He talked about the availability of better coffee at 7-11 and Aeropress drinks at Starbucks. He also cautioned that ready made drinks in grocery stores are cutting in to coffee shops’ profits. Then he warned that rising rents and wages are hurting cafes as well.
Next, Julie Jargon on Fox Business talked about the retail environment in America having a coffee problem. She suggested the boom in retail coffee joints (up 16% over the last 5 years) is hurting their owners. While that may be the case on the coasts, I maintained there is plenty of room in the Specialty Coffee industry- especially in Middle America.
The last article we looked at was Nick Brown’s piece covering Allegra World Coffee Portal’s Project Cafe 2018 Report. This was the first place I’d heard of the Fifth Wave of Coffee. It is, apparently, big investors behind small, artisan cafes that are growing at scale while maintaining a focus on the quality of coffee.
We also appreciate the discussion with the excellent Espresso Liz from Top Espresso Gear. Her site is incredible, and her input on the waves of coffee has been great.
Know your why. In the face of this doom and gloom prediction about retail in America, we take a quick look at a brand that is booming in spite of these predictions: Chick-Fil-A. They invest a lot of time into their franchise owners, and those owners put in a lot of time and money into the process. They have found their ‘why’ and it has led to a larger profitability for their business. Check out this BuzzFeed video, and holla at me with your opinion as to why they are successful.
We also beat the drum of mobile coffee. Alexa. Each. Siri. Dash Buttons. We want to use the technology that is out there right now to bring coffee to the masses. We’re not doing it yet, but we know where we’re headed.