Wednesday, 1 June 2011
Secrets of Coffee Superbrands
In the last few weeks, however, we have had a slew of lionising stories about Howard Schultz, Starbucks’ eminence grise accompanying the launch of his new book on how he revived the company. Things often turn around quickly in the coffee world – after years when stories about the crash in prices paid to coffee farmers surmised that their only hope lay in fair trade, now the huge spike in prices is generating coverage suggesting growers will not deliver on their contracts with the fair trade organisation as they chase better returns elsewhere.
As a coffee historian and commentator I try to bring some sense of perspective to these stories, focussing more on the long term processes of change that underlie them - such as Italian-style coffee’s transition from a premium to a mainstream taste, and the rising demand for coffee in producer countries. What did I say last night? Click here to find out.