Coffee getting more expensive?

So, I noticed this article detailing the shortage of Arabica beans on the Wall Street Journal site earlier today and thought it might be interesting to discuss in a blog post.

I’m not really sure the details on Arabica vs. Robusta, but I’ve always heard that Robusta is the inferior product and has a more bitter taste (although twice as much caffeine for those of us that turn to coffee for that). I have seen roasters that advertise their blends as 100% Arabica, but I am not really sure the difference in taste myself. What I am pretty sure about is that all of the roasters I order from us at least some Arabica beans.

I’m not sure what  that means in terms of the taste of my favorite blends, but I think the big concern is that if roasters want to deliver the same (or better, since some roasters are always getting better) quality of blends that means they have to make a choice between affordability or raising prices for us, the consumers. Otherwise they won’t be able to make a profit.

My main question is how much of a hike we can expect, if it’s something like a few additional cents or so per bag, most of us won’t feel the pinch too bad, but I have the feeling it might be a bit more substantial than that if they don’t find a solution soon.

Now, it’s probably only a short term problem, because one can hope that conditions will improve, but I’m curious to hear from you and maybe some of the roasters that read these posts (are there any?) about their game plan or what you as consumers think will happen in the near future with coffee prices.

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