Is there a place for Folgers at a Cafe?


New member
Oct 9, 2006
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I have been people watching at my local cafes and have heard a number of people ask for "just a regular coffee." This got me to thinking about offering a Folgers type of coffee at my future coffee shop.

My thinking is if people want it why not offer it to them? Is this sacrilege? Will the coffee gods do bad things to me?


New member
Jul 18, 2006
Winnipeg, MB
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I dated a girl who's parents loved instant coffee. They even had this weird drip style machine that only used instant coffee.

I just didn't understand what the point was? Why go through all that effort to drink bad coffee.

I think when people are after just plain coffee what they're really saying is I don't care about what you call it. Some people only have exposure to bad coffee and they don't want to have to order a latte, this, that, with the other. Dark roast/light roast. Just give me your crappy coffee and I'll hide the tastes with milk and sugar.

I think there's a market for it, just a very small one. It shrinks every day. Even with Tim Horton's here in Canada the coffee is somewhat OK. It's easy to order and beats Folgers any time.
You don't need to worry about the gods if you serve Folgers in your coffee bar. You need to worry about your cash register. Cash is king, but god it ain't.

The issue you're going to run into is one of diferentiation. If people can get coffee in a can at home for 3 cents a cup or in your coffee bar for $1 a cup, you might have a value gap. if you lower your prices to reach out to the Folgers crowd, you're going to have to be very, very tight on expenses or you're going to have a major margin squeeze.

A better choice would be a nice, basic central american washed coffee with a light roast. That will allow people to move up from Folgers and Maxwell hour and provide enough differentation so that when people go back to Folgers it will taste just a little off.

You want the coffee equivalent of the roach motel. Folgers drinkers go in, but they don't go out.


New member
Dec 8, 2006
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When I have a customer who orders "just a regular cup of coffee", I ask if they enjoy a dark or light roast and then provide them with a cup of brewed coffee. I agree that if customers want a cup of Folger's, they will probably think twice about paying the price at a coffee shop vs. brewing a pot at home or waiting til they get to the office!