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Decaf is...cool now?

Hi there,

 

In specialty coffee, decaf is a four-letter word.

 

Akin to he-who-must-not-be-named.

 

Speak and prepare to be exiled.

 

Well... until now.


Decaf is cool now



This past few weeks have been BIG in coffee. The SCA (Specialty Coffee Association) hosted its Expo – the conference that discusses new trends in coffee, highlights industry news and tips, and pits baristas and roasters against each other in championship matches.

 

Well, BIG news because last week a DECAF coffee won the championship presented by Weihong Zhang – the founder of BlendIn Coffee Club (I've had the pleasure of visiting before and it's a MUST-TRY if you're near Houston, TX).

 

Alright, folks. That's it. Pack it in.

 

Decaf is cool now.

 

Or is it?...


Decaf interest will grow – look at the non-alcoholic beverage industry



Here's the truth: vices minus the active ingredients are growing in popularity.

 

The oft-quoted hipster barista trope of "death before decaf" seems to be...not it anymore.

 

Observing the alcohol industry, there's a HUGE trend: non-alcoholic beverages are the fastest growing segment – expected annual average of 6%, compared to beer's relatively flat growth.

 

Tack on the rising popularity of mocktails (exemplified by an entire non-alcoholic bar here in Austin called Sans Bar), and the "vice-free" vice category is poised to skyrocket.


Don't dismiss decaf coffee


decaf-coffee-drake-meme

I've always said that the specialty coffee trends follow behind beer and wine.

 

So, if those industries are leading indicators that people want the drink without the effects (or at least that option), then decaf is going to get more popular in coming years.

 

Often, coffee shops will dismiss decaf, write it off, or scoff at customers when they order it.

 

Well, forget that mindset.

 

As business owners and baristas, it's our job to give our customers great experiences – including decaf when they ask for it.

 

So, stock decaf. Make it clear that you serve decaf. Pull your decaf shots with the utmost sincerity.

 

And, TBH – as much as I love pure, unadulterated coffee, I do like me some decaf in the afternoons 😄

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