Cafes...do you buy "pre roasted" via UPS, etc.???

alsterling

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Aug 11, 2006
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Dana Point, CA
If your business buys pre roasted from an outside vendor, how do you deal with the possibility of inventory shortages? How many days out is your roaster? Do you have "local backup vendors?" Respecting quality roasters as being in a seperate business, we don't want to drain resources to in-house roast at the outset of our business venture. One of our prime blend vendors only supplies "roasted" and does not sell bulk green. Outside of their setting up a licensed pro roaster closer to us, I guess I'm going to have to work around this issue? Maybe this is not an issue? If you can relate, please offer your comments.
 

cafemakers

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Nov 3, 2004
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Are you operating a coffee shop or some other type of business?

You may want to try searching for the topic "roasting" on this board, as the matter of a retailer roasting their own coffee is discussed regularly here.

Best,

Andrew
 
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alsterling

alsterling

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Dana Point, CA
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Andrew..... thanks for the reply.

We're working on a modified kiosk retail model. While a central commissary might include roasting, and would be a logical step, initial thoughts are to vendor out and concentrate on optimizing the overall concept. Reinventing the wheel isn't one of our favorite things, so locking on to someone's blend isn't a bad thing, it's just the inventory control issues. And we see nothing wrong with formulating an in-house blend down the road.

I'll take a look at the other forum posts.

Thanks again, Al
 

cafemakers

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You may want to read my recent article in the July '06 Tea & Coffee Trade Journal that discusses some of the issues regarding retailers roasting. If you do not have that issue handy, we have the article on our website, here: http://www.cafemakers.com/news/tctj-roaster.pdf

I generally advise against new retailers starting to roast their own coffee. These are two separate disciplines; although it may be possible for anyone to roast coffee, it takes quite a bit of skill and practice in a number of different areas (including cupping) in order to do it well.

Inventory control is generally not an issue, so long as you plan your business properly. For assistance on this, I suggest that you speak with your coffee roaster (the person, not the machine) or business advisor.

Best regards,

Andrew
 
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alsterling

alsterling

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Andrew, I couldn't agree more with you when describing the roasting and retailing of coffee as two distinct businesses. I'll definitely read the article.

Just from initial observations, I quickly figured out that the notable roasters have either made roasting a business unto itself, or have created a seperate business unit within their "mature" coffee retailing business.

A few coffee retailers have shared that they want to move their roasting activity out of the retail area and into a lease space. They, and I, are not convinced that having a roaster in the shop has a significant impact on sales.

Considering retail cost per square foot being so high, I see a roaster and sacks of green as taking up alot of costly space. On top of all that, being distracted during a roast with questions by well-meaning clients can cause other issues. The thought being, roasting demands attention and time, and is probably most efficient when housed in a seperate and "cost appropriate" space.

Best, Al
 
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