In a coffee landscape filled with boutique roasters and high-end specialty drinks, the c-store continues to carve out its own caffeinated niche.

Today is National Coffee Day. That’s cause for celebration among java lovers, and there are a lot of them: since coffee first showed up in Yemen (not Java!) sometime in the mid-15th century

[1] it has grown to be the most popular hot drink in the world.[2]

Enthusiasm for coffee isn’t going to go away any time soon. Retailers know it—coffee gets more attention today than ever. Specialized coffee-centric chains, hyper-focused on coming up with new variations on an established theme, provide a dizzying array of options that vary based on consumer whim. The segment is expanding, too.

Coffee beans growing on the vine.

For the c-store, the appeal of coffee is more than a “look at me” type proposition. It’s an essential part of success; a product fundamental to the identity of a c-store. It creates a built-in audience that returns again and again. In the right markets it’s a key contributor in creating a gathering place among locals in the morning, especially when breakfast Foodservice is on its game.

At the same time, the successful operator knows that the interesting product variations give customers a reason to notice. It might be a high tech coffee machine that can dispense custom lattes by the cup, or an attractive space strategically positioned next to fresh baked pastries, or simply carrying the latest packaged coffee beverages on your shelf. Here are some articles that round out our look at coffee and convenience stores:

Coffee plants being cultivated at Greenwell Farms, Captain Cook, Hawaii.

Like other dispensed beverages, coffee can be difficult for a c-store to track and expense because there’s a lot of moving parts: cups, napkins, stirrers, etc. Managing these components, which are bought individually but sold only as part of another unique item, can be a headache. But they are cases that the inventory modules of SSCS’s Computerized Daily Book (CDB) can handle with precision, including costs of generated waste.

If you’d like more information on how you shore up the profit potential that may be leaking out of your coffee service, so you can get it running at an optimum, please give us a call at 1-800-972-7727. We’d like to help.

[1] Coffee – Wikipedia

[2] Ibid.