Buying coffee beans can mean more
than free coffee

It is interesting to note that in the world of commodity trading, coffee beans is a commodity that is considered to be price inelastic. This technical term means that the actual price of coffee traded has very little influence on the volume of coffee consumed.

In other words, regardless of what is happening on the commodity market to the price of coffee beans, the amount of coffee consumed does not change! If the price of coffee rises, people do not necessarily consume less coffee.

Likewise if the price of coffee falls, people do not suddenly double their coffee consumption. Price fluctuations in the price of beans are more a product of supply than of demand.

Last year the global coffee production amounted to 188 million bags of coffee. For the uninitiated a bag of coffee weighs approximately 60 kilograms.


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The United States consumes the most coffee in the world and Brazil is the largest producer of coffee in the world. Other significant coffee producing countries are Vietnam, Columbia and Indonesia.

Given that in April 2009 a bag of coffee was gong for $134 a bag, the global coffee production is valued at just over 25 billion dollars. It follows that being a coffee supplier is big business.

Obviously the price varies whether you are dealing in green beans, espresso beans, organic coffee or roasted coffee. All have coffee beans as a base and these are traded on the commodity market.


If one were to buy “low” and sell “high”, money could be made – which in a way translates into free coffee. Trading in coffee beans is very serious business, primarily because of the price inelastic nature of the demand and consumption of coffee. Too complicated to get free this way? click on the link for an easier way...

Another way to increase profits would be to purchase green coffee and invest in a coffee roasting business. This would add value to the beans and increase the profit margin.

An additional way to add value would be not only to roast green coffee beans but also add flavour to make flavoured coffee. This would justify an even higher mark up and there by an increased profit margin.

The “buy low sell high” strategy can only work if you are able to store the green beans for a lengthy period of time, albeit weeks or even months. Green beans need to be able to breathe.

Any form of air tight container is bad. Since green beans have moisture in them an air tight container can and will lead to condensation and your beans will foul.

Beans need to be stored in a dark cool, dry place in a container that can breathe such as a sack or bag. If you are storing different types of beans it is highly advisable to clearly mark which bag contains which beans so that you do not sell the wrong beans at the wrong price!

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About US | OCM Profile

OCM ( was started in 2007 with the first webpage about coffee machines. And for a number of years, we focused on helping people find their desired coffee machine (we still are helping folks with that! So, if you are looking for coffee machines for office or restaurants - check out the link). 

In 2010, we started getting enquiries on restaurant marketing and we start to help food and beverage brands with their marketing. Below are campaigns and events that we have done over the years: 

OCM's campaigns: F&B Marketing Ideas by OCM 

OCM's Events: F&B Industry events by or with OCM

Check out this restaurant marketing guide to learn more about the many campaigns and companies we have worked with. 

Since then, we have also created many marketing workshops and classes for the F&B industry. Many of these modules are still running in tertiary institutions such as Temasek Polytechnic Skillsfuture Academy and also ITE College East COC classes, below are some snippets of our lectures and workshops: 

OCM’s F&B workshops: Food and Beverage Marketing Lectures | Workshops - click to watch classes on customer journey map, JTBD and more. 

So, if you are looking for industry practitioners to help you scale your coffee or F&B businesses, do drop us a message or book an appointment. Do also check out our various social media platforms on regular F&B and coffee market updates: 

For regular coffee (F&B) related videos: OCM Youtube

For Daily Coffee Inspiration (fun coffee content): OCM IG

For insights into the coffee (F&B) industry: OCM LinkedIN 

PS: For the coffee lovers, we continue to share coffee articles (and videos) and have also started a free coffee class section (with free online coffee training supported by coffee partners).

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Find: Where to buy Coffee Beans in Singapore (or any where in the world)

Featured coffee brewing method: How to prepare V60 Coffee

Previously: Making Coffee with a Coffee Sock

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