February 13th, 2012
Oliver Strand’s article, “With Coffee, the Price of Individualism Can Be High“, in The New York Times discusses one-cup coffee brewers rise in popularity and also reviews how expensive single-cup coffee is on a per-pound basis. Strand computes that Nespresso’s Arpeggio espresso capsule retails for $51.71 a pound in comparison to Starbucks’ $12.95 per-pound pricing of their espresso. Folgers’ Black Silk k-cups can go cost up to $50.51 per-pound, almost $12.00 more than a pound of single-source coffee from Stumptown Roasters. Green Mountain Coffee’s Nantucket Blend kcups came in at $31.81 per-pound.
K cups and other one-cup coffee brewers are more expensive on a per-pound basis and will probably always be. But Ric Rhinehart, executive director of the Specialty Coffee Association of America, believes that the popularity of single-cup coffee brewers is based on a generational shift: instead of pricing coffee per pound, Americans have started to price it per cup. So much coffee is bought on-the-go from coffee shops, that Americans have started to think that coffee costs anywhere from $1.50 to $3.75 per cup, and when one-cup coffee brewers per cup cost is compared to that of coffee shops, it wins. For more information on K-cup per cup pricing, take a look at our kcup informational page.