It’s the Friday before Christmas, and judging by the coffee news this week, the world has mostly given up and is coasting gleefully towards 2018. This is usually the time of year—if the West Wing is anything to go by—that governments and companies try to quietly bury bad or unpopular news.

In the world of coffee, however, everything keeps right on going: weird fads, corporate consolidations and doomsday prepping, incongruously alongside more significant news such as a disabled workers advocate winning a national award.

Let’s start with the important stuff and work our way down, shall we?

Advocate for disabled workers is 2017 CNN Hero of the Year - via CNN

Amy Wright, owner of Bitty & Beau’s Coffee in Wilmington, North Carolina, has been named CNN’s Hero of the Year for her work advocating for disabled people, 40 of whom she employs at her cafe. Her two children, for whom Bitty & Beau’s was named, were born with Down’s Syndrome.

"When you become a parent of a child with special needs, you are instantly thrust into becoming an advocate," Wright explained. "Trying to make people see the beauty in their lives that we see." After she learned that 70% of disabled people are unemployed, she decided to open a coffee shop to help fix that.

Read more here.

The Apocalypse Preppers Who Think Coffee Will Save Them - via GQ

Apparently the end of the world will not halt coffee production, roasting, bagging or sales. According to several doomsday preppers, coffee will be key to surviving after the inevitable apocalypse. For its caffeine (to keep the survivor alert), its medicinal properties (it has been shown to help with severe migraines), and for its relaxing, normalizing ritualism (there’s nothing more relaxing than making and drinking a cup of coffee).

Obviously they’re referring to vacuum-sealed bags of military-grade instant coffee, but there’s something comforting in the image of a gnarled apocalypse survivor—probably played by Denzel Washington or Viggo Mortensen—taking five minutes out of their irradiated day to brew an Aeropress of a lightly-roasted El Salvador. Delicious.

Read more here.

Costa's Started Selling Glitter Coffee To Brighten Up Your Winter Mornings - via Pretty 52

In more horrifying news, UK “coffee” brand Costa is trying to combat the winter blues with something they’re calling Shimmer Coffee. In a move in no way aimed at starting an Instagram craze, from Monday the 18th of December they’ll be available at select stores until they run out of stock. This definitely won’t leave people praying for the apocalypse at all.

Read more here.

This covert German holding company is buying up all the coffee and doughnuts - via Fast Company


A German investment firm, sexily named JAB Holdings, has decided it wants to own coffee. Or at least, the part that Nestle doesn't already own. The secretive conglomerate—because those two words are never associated with anything dastardly—began in 2012 by acquiring Peet’s Coffee and Tea, one of the founders of the American coffee scene. Since then it has bought Caribou Coffee, Mighty Leaf Tea and—via Peet’s—both Stumptown and Intelligentsia. Oh, and it bought Keurig Green Mountain for $13.9 billion in 2016.

Not satisfied with owning all of the coffee companies it could possible find, JAB then started buying other related enterprises. Like a bagel with your coffee? JAB owns Einstein Bros. Bagels and Bruegger’s Bagels, as well as Panera Bread. Coffee and doughnuts go well together, right? Well, now JAB owns Krispy Kreme as well. Corporate consolidation sure is tasty.

Read more here.

The ‘Selfieccino’ Is Here to Ruin Coffee Forever - via Grub Street

In another example of blatant Instagram-baiting, a tea room in London is offering customers the chance to have their face emblazoned on their latte—or “selfieccino” as they insist on calling it.

Because who doesn’t love staring at their own face as they gulp down an enormous mug of coffee-flavored milk.

Read more, if you dare, here.

Is coffee good or bad for you?

This week it seems like coffee is still good for you, with many articles still surfing the wave of that one study which showed drinking three or more cups per day reduced the risk of death, or something.

Whether this will last into January, when everything is bad for you and you should definitely get more exercise because summer is right around the corner, remains to be seen.


Articles worth your time this week

How an East Hollywood Coffee Shop Is Creating Space for the LGBTQ+ Community by Gillian Ferguson

Baristas In The City Of Babel by Susie Kealy

This King Hated Coffee So Much He Tried to Kill Someone With It by Erin Blakemore

Giving a Family Business a Jolt With Coffee That Empowers Women by Dan Hyman

Until next week, drink good coffee—perhaps a holiday blend of some kind.