Peace, Love, and Coffee

A diary of the wonderful and wacky goings on at Coffee to the People, an independent coffeehouse located at 1206 Masonic Avenue in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, California.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

All organic parfait

We have been working hard to expand our food options at COFFEE TO THE PEOPLE. It is a lot more challenging than I expected to find quality organic ingredients at an affordable price. Our latest creation is a very tasty all organic yogurt parfait made with Stonyfield yogurt, bananas, strawberries, and granola. Currently we charge $3.95 for a 12 oz. serving, but I think that might be a little low, particularly when one considers the labor involved. Bob and Megan point out that other places charge about the same for their yogurt parfaits, but those aren't organic. I suspect people will be willing to pay a little bit more for our organic products because they know they cost more to produce. Still, it's very hard to know what that proper price point is.

Any feedback on this issue would be greatly appreciated. What do customers think is fair? What are other businesses charging for organic yogurt parfaits?

3 Comments:

At 9/22/2005 05:19:00 AM, Blogger Siel said...

OK -- I don't have data on the organic parfaits for you -- cuz I can't find any around here (sniff) but, I am hoping that you would consider offering organic foodstuffs at comperable prices to the "regular" stuff as long as it's still financially doable for you -- mainly because I'd like more people to try -- and find they love -- more eco-friendly stuff.

Why I'm concerned about this: See Pillager's concerns on my fair trade chocolate post. I guess I feel like yes, the converted, like me, are certainly willing to pay more for the good stuff, but making the good stuff more expensive makes it really difficult to convert the unconverted.

You might also find this article by Joel Makower helpful.

Of course, I am also writing this as a consumer. I do really feel for you guys running green businesses -- the costs are higher, and the thanks seem few and far between. I won't think any less of Coffee to the People if you end up raising prices :)

BTW -- Thanks for de-italicizing! My eyes love you...

 
At 9/22/2005 08:02:00 PM, Blogger Bob said...

I think McDonald's has a parfait for $1. But something tells me that isn't organic.

 
At 9/22/2005 10:04:00 PM, Blogger Karin said...

Siel,

Thanks for your input. You're quite right that we need to find a way to make fair trade and organic products affordable to the average consumer, but we also have to be realistic. Until there's the same kind of economies of scale for environmentally sound products that there are for environmentally destructive products, the environmentally responsible products are going to cost more.

The question for us is really how low we can make our prices and still stay in business. It's a tough call, particularly since our overhead costs are quite high. I don't know how things are going to turn out, but I'll try to keep you posted on how we resolve this dilemma over time.

 

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