Where to buy cheap coffee beans in Singapore - In Singapore, coffee lovers are obsessed with the speciality coffee scene which advocates single-origin beans among other things. Consumers are familiar with companies such as Dutch Colony Coffee, Common Man Coffee Roasters, and Perk Coffee where such single origins are marketed as ultra-premium coffee offerings which can cost up to $20 for a 250gm bag of coffee.
However, did you know that you can actually get high quality, gourmet grade coffee that is roasted in Italy for as little as $7.50 for a 250gm bag of coffee? - Freshly roasted in Italy, and even ground for your convenience. You might be wondering why there is such a huge price difference - is there really a significant difference in quality?
Robusta vs Arabica
Where to buy cheap coffee beans in Singapore - The first thing that you’ll need to understand is that the main price differentiating factor is the disparity between Robusta & Arabica coffee beans. Grown at different altitudes, Arabica coffee tends to command a higher price as it is generally grown higher up in the mountains, in more difficult and inaccessible locations.
While only Arabica beans can be considered speciality coffee, there is actually no basis to say that Arabica is superior to Robusta or vice versa. They simply have different traits that make them desirable.
Generally speaking, Arabica beans tend to bring forward a better aroma and more complex tasting notes. However, they can sometimes lack body, largely due to the fact that many roasters today subscribe to a lighter roast profile in order to retain certain flavours in the Arabica bean.
This also leads most third-wave coffee roasts to be higher on acidity. Robusta on the other hand generally loses out in terms of Aroma but usually provides a strong and robust body with very mild acidity. It is smooth and comforting to drink, but with less complex flavour notes.
Long story short - this is simply a matter of perception and preference. A little known fact is that the Italian Coffee style, which is revered and accepted globally, traditionally calls for the use of Robusta in a blend with Arabica, to provide the best of both worlds.
To many, Italian roasts are considered to be the original western coffee drinking style as we know it today. It is also important to note that in Singapore, our Asian palettes are also quite accustomed to the taste of Robusta, and in some blind tasting sessions, it has been found that Singaporeans actually subconsciously prefer the taste of Robusta to Arabica.
Scale of Production:
Where to buy cheap coffee beans in Singapore - Another key factor that determines coffee pricing is volume. Most speciality coffee roasters around the world, purchase and roast in relatively small batches, as their facility usually does not allow for larger scale production, and also because the global volume of speciality coffee consumed is still considered small compared to gourmet coffee.
As such, most specialty coffee roasters do not enjoy the same economies of scale as gourmet coffee roasters - and the cost of this gets passed on to you as the consumer. Consider this - a traditional Italian Gourmet Coffee roaster which sees massive volume go through its production, is likely able to provide a good quality, well rounded, and balanced gourmet coffee blend to consumers at a reasonable price.
Take this coffee for example - Peppo’s Gourmet Coffee is a blend between Arabica and Robusta beans, that is roasted in Lazio, Italy, and vacuum sealed for freshness. In Singapore, it only costs as little as $7.50 per 250gm, which is much cheaper than other major brands like Illy and Lavazza Coffee, which costs minimally $12 per 250gm. Despite the cost difference, it is likely that you will get a similar product in terms of taste and quality.
Where to buy cheap coffee beans in Singapore - Have you ever watched a sports event like a Tennis Grand Slam Tournament, and seen Lavazza Coffee as the title sponsor? Or perhaps you’ve seen some of the specialty coffee guys like Perk Coffee pushing Facebook adverts to your Facebook news feed whenever you scroll through?
All these are part of some of the marketing costs that companies undertake to reach out to consumers like yourself. There is nothing wrong with advertising your product, but as the consumer, you should be aware that such costs are factored in, and in a sense passed down to you.
The more marketing a company spends on the product, the more costs it has to add on to its product cost, thus elevating prices. If you are in the market for a good and high quality coffee that will work well with your espresso machine or coffee dripper at home, but don’t want to spend too much, you might want to look at lesser explored brands like Peppo’s Coffee.
The product is still made by a reputable company, in Italy, with years of heritage and tradition, but without the additional costs of marketing being passed on to you.
The next time you pick up a bag of coffee, you might want to think about what its really worth.
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Questions about coffee? Have it answered by the professionals. Examples of some questions:
What are the considerations for an office coffee station?
What are the essential V60 Coffee Brewing tools?
Non coffee (but important to coffee) question: What is whole milk?
OCM (OnCoffeeMakers.com) 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.
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