Betting on Quality

Betting on Quality

Coffee is the world's second most valuable traded commodity, behind only petroleum. There are approximately 25 million farmers and coffee workers in over 50 countries involved in producing coffee around the world.


The last Strauss consumer study relieved that a regular Romanian consumer is drinking 1.6l liquids daily and the coffee acquires a share of 18% of it (ISRA-Last Day Consumption-2013). Ranking the second place after water, with around 298ml daily consumption, coffee is a very important category and consumers are accustomed to expect and claim-Quality. 
Romanian coffee consumers are not driven by impulse. It’s enough to have a visit at a hypermarket to observe the habit in front of the shelves. They are looking for freshness, checking the expiring date. They are looking into claims/benefits and they are open for new assortments. Usually they buy more than a coffee category and there is an important overlapping between roast& ground coffee and mixes. 
They are loyal to the brand but they are harsh when the product did not deliver the same satisfaction as before. There is a clear trend , that of people buying less often but in bigger quantities, therefore keeping the same quality or upgrading the quality becomes a must for all the coffee producers. 
There are tough times for coffee manufacturers and some things are not depending on companies. 
Retail pressure for better commercial conditions, increasing raw materials and utility prices , owners’ growing targets are putting a lot of pressure on products’ quality and sometimes technology cannot compensate the coffee sourcing. 
This is a time when Romanian consumers are looking for products that are not making any compromises on Quality. There is a well-known expression in Romania: I cannot afford to buy cheap things. 
When we talk about quality coffee what exactly does that mean? It means care and attention throughout every step of the process until it reaches the consumers hand. Quality of the crop, transportation and warehousing, quality control before and after roasting, roasting process and speedy packaging, the quality of packaging, all are factors that are direct influencing the quality of the coffee that reaches the consumers‘ houses. 
Quality coffee is care and attention to the product from farmer to cup. One missed step along the way can result in loss of quality. Quality means also external control. Companies are sending samples to International 
Quality Institutions in order to first, be checked, and second to have a benchmark versus the other big producers. Institutions like OKO-TEST, DLG or SUSTAINABLE HARVEST or RAIN FOREST ALLIANCE are only part of the institutions/certificates that are used like endorsers for companies to reinforce their interest and preoccupation for keeping and upgrading the Quality of the coffee products. Despite of the “so called” trends of cheap& fast& convenience, Romanian coffee consumers are demanding for Quality in order to improve their coffee moments. As a coffee company, we need to be aligned on their requests to “keep the line”!