EAST GREENWICH, R.I. (WPRI) — Coffee regulars may notice their daily cup of joe is a bit more expensive.
Analysts project an extreme drought and unexpected frost in Brazil earlier this year will impact next year’s coffee bean harvest. The country is the world’s largest producer of arabica coffee beans.
Due to these factors, Johnston micro-roaster Richard Alan Specialty Coffees said earlier this month it is increasing prices “on average by $0.50 per pound.”
Main St. Coffee in East Greenwich gets some of their beans from Richard Alan, and manager Emma Mariano said it means the local café will have to increase its prices in the coming weeks, too.
“We’re going to be raising our prices to about ten cents more than they already are,” Mariano said.
Some regulars at Main St. Coffee tell 12 News their morning cup isn’t just about the caffeine.
“Everyday I meet my brother, and we sit here and shoot the breeze,” Main St. regular Kenneth Farrelly said. “I wouldn’t let 10 cents a cup keep me, say, at home, watching TV.”
Rising coffee prices is not the only problem local coffee shops are dealing with right now.
Mariano said for the majority of the summer, they’ve also been dealing with paper and plastic cup shortages.
“We’ve been out of all of our 24-ounce plastic ice cups, and we just ran out of our paper 16 ounce cups,” she said.
The disruption has forced the café staff to shop around for cups if their regular supplier is out, and it’s also prompted her to ask regulars to bring in reusable cups if they have them. Those who do can get a discount, according to Mariano.
Mariano said a shortage of cups has been a problem more-so this year, she believes, now that more people are out of the house.
“There’s just so much more demand for certain things that we run out more quickly,” Mariano said.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, coffee consumption globally is expected to outpace production.
The department reports 164.8 million bags of coffee are expected to be produced this year, while consumption is expected to reach 165 million bags.