An article on financial troubles effecting coffee ordering at a local coffee shop.

From the Article:

"Our downtown customers are more price conscious," he said. "The average income is not quite as high as in Mount Lookout, so it has always been more of a straight coffee crowd. It's also determined by the flow of business there. People need to get that cup of coffee quickly and get to their desk. Since we make coffee self-serve, it is easier to get than to wait for a latte or other higher-effort drink."

The firm has seen whole-bean sales go up, too.

"People realize that they can buy a bag of fresh roasted beans for 10 or 11 dollars a pound, take it home and make eight or nine pots,'' Reichardt said. "That way they are still getting good quality coffee at a good price.

"Personally, I think that high-quality coffee is one of those affordable luxuries that people don't want to give up,'' he said. "I can't promise that it will stay this way; but at this time, coffee has been able to entrench itself and compete against" the weak economy.

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In Singapore, we are seeing Starbucks and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, growing a few more stores despite the downturn. These are probably commitments made before the crisis hit with its full impact. The sales of espresso coffee has also dwindled, but the local expat community is upholding the demand simply because the local coffee (100%robusta beans roasted till pitch black with butter, margarine, sugar and sometimes corn) is a tad too rough for the tastebuds. However, business is slowing from locals who can easily switched back to the local toxic brew of burnt charcoal which can go for S$0.60 cents per cup.
"Affordable luxuries..." could not have said it better myself ;p

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