by Richard Lowry

5 things to consider when choosing your coffee supplier

5 things to consider when choosing your coffee supplier
Choosing or changing your coffee supplier is a big decision for foodservice operators and can be a daunting one with the complexities of not just the product, but also the training and the equipment side of the purchase.

With that in mind, we’ve come up with the 5 key areas you need to consider when making any decisions around your coffee supplier.


1. Range

You want to work with a supplier who has a range of coffees and blends that will enable you to choose what you want and what is right for your business and customers. A lot of coffee suppliers have a very limited range and often only 1 or 2 blends.

The coffee market is now very diverse with lots of brands and great tasting blends at great prices. Make sure your supplier is working with you for you.


2. Quality and taste

Probably the two most key areas when changing your coffee or creating a coffee concept for the first time.

Make sure you like the taste, but also invite your customers along to try the new blends you are considering, because the blend you love maybe the blend they hate and after all it will be them who are buying it.

Remember the customer will vote with their feet if they don’t like your coffee, so always involve them in the process.

With regards to quality, ask your supplier key questions about their roasting methods, coffee grade, blends, the country of origin for the beans, how do they purchase them and why? Make sure you are happy with the answers they provide.


3. Reliability and deliveries

In the current market actually getting what you ordered can be difficult. Ensure they have a robust supply chain and can deliver to you when you want.

Check minimum order quantities – you don’t want to be ordering stock that you don’t need.

Check the coffee market on the blends that you are being offered. If the market is telling you Costa Rican beans are increasing in price due to demand and your supplier says they can get you as much Costa Rican as you need and at a cheap price, something isn’t right.


4. Support

Does your supplier offer Barista training, P.O.S, equipment with a professional back up and service plan? Do they supply recognised brands, can they take you to a showroom to look at equipment and taste your choice of coffee through that equipment?

A good supplier should be able to provide you with all of this added value.


5. Sustainability

This is now key to everything we do, especially coffee, and every supplier should be doing something towards sustainability.

With regards to coffee beans, you can chose from a number of certified products such as Fairtrade, Rain forest Alliance and Utz, but a lot of coffee brands are now taking it upon themselves to do more and create projects that directly affect the coffee farmers and their families and your supplier should have full traceability of this.

Ask questions such as; what is the project? Where is the project? What affect is it having? Along with other sustainability questions like; are their takeaway cups compostable? How can they help your business to be more sustainable? Can they supply equipment made win the UK?

Consumers are becoming more educated about coffee and more concerned about sustainability – choosing the right blend not only pleases your customers, it also increases sales.


Coffee your way provides you with an extensive range of coffee solutions. Our specialist team can help you make the right decision when it comes to coffee in your business from the right product range and equipment to the support you need to get started.

Click here to take a look at Coffee your way and how we can help you serve a fantastic cup of coffee every time.

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