Green coffee bean trading is a complex business that is currently experiencing a difference in price that we haven’t seen in a decade. Many consumers become confused when they hear their favorite groceries’ prices are increasing, but companies do everything they can to properly navigate through an uncontrollable situation.
According to recent surveys, more than half of inventory orders have been delayed or canceled. Nearly 40% of consumers are uneasy about shortages and price hikes––all consequences of recent global events. For many, the pandemic and the weather are just two of the culprits.
But what happens when prices of necessities go up? What can sellers and buyers hope to accomplish?
John Puckett, the owner of Coffee Bean Corral in Jackson, Mississippi, says coffee prices normally go up and down, but “we’ve never seen an up like this.” The international green specialty coffee bean wholesaler is “concerned, but not panicking,” and plans to keep its prices as steady as possible.
To the everyday consumer, green coffee bean trading can seem a bit chaotic––there’s a lot of factors that go into the process of pricing the beans: seasonality, international shipping, banking fees, packing, domestic transportation, milling, labor, taxes, and the C Market just to name a few. If milling is strict (and it is to ensure the finest quality is sent to you), that can raise the price from the National Federation of Coffee Growers (FNC).
Coffee sellers set their margins to cover normal fluctuation, but this is the highest price coffee has been in the last ten years. Coffee Bean Corral is prepared to get “their house in order” first before the team even thinks about raising prices. According to Catherine Mansell, Coffee Bean Corral’s Senior Buyer, the company is doing “absolutely everything” within their power “to keep prices down by trimming the fat.”
As coffee lovers and buyers, we’ll experience stable prices, erratic prices, and every high and low in between. This is because coffee is an agricultural crop, which means something as simple as the weather––the frost in Brazil for example––could wipe out a chunk of the year’s harvest.
Though it may be difficult to plan accordingly in a field where uncertainty is always possible, the consumers are the most important part of the entire operation. Coffee Bean Corral wants to not only be transparent but to enact cautionary measures and plan ahead. Of course, we don’t want to think of a thunderstorm when it’s nice and sunny, but today’s price won’t be tomorrow’s. Coffee prices will always fluctuate, but the quality of Coffee Bean Corral’s green coffee beans will always be the finest available.