Coffee News Roundup: Week Ending February 7th

A diner mug filled with coffee sits atop a folded newspaper on a wooden table

It’s that time of the week again, Friday heaving into view like a listing schooner taking on water.

I have no idea what that means, I was just thinking about ships.

Let’s look at this week’s coffee news, shall we?

JAB's $3.3 Billion Coffee IPO Moves Closer With Banks Selected - via Yahoo! Finance

JAB Holding, the shadowy conglomerate that has been on a coffee-company-buying spree over the last few years, is planning on publicly listing said coffee empire in Europe, and with its selection of bank advisers it looks like the IPO is creeping ever nearer.

Close up of stock information in a German-language newspaper

What does this mean? Good question, but it appears JAB will look to raise several billion with this listing, which might help it claw back some of the tens of billions it spent buying Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Peet’s, Jacob Douwe Egberts, and so on.

What it really means is probably nothing, except that a giant company will get bigger and richer.

On the plus side, once publicly listed the secretive enterprise might face a bit more scrutiny than it does currently, but in practice it’s just another step on its journey to compete with Nestlé and Starbucks (and presumably Luckin) on a global scale.

Read the full story here.

This Coffee Is Nuts, Literally - via Sprudge

A peanut farmer in Virginia has decided to make coffee out of peanuts.

I mean, obviously it’s not coffee. It’s ground roasted peanuts that you brew to make a coffee-like liquid which apparently tastes a bit like coffee.

The original article that Sprudge references includes this lovely interaction:

“Do you mean peanut flavored coffee?” one editor asked. “Like hazelnuts?”  No. We did not. We meant a coffee-like drink made only from roasted peanuts.  She politely declined to try it.

Read the full story here.

Algrano and Ikawa Partner for Campaign to Give Roasters to Growers - via Daily Coffee News

Ikawa makes tabletop sample roasters aimed at coffee companies. Algrano is a Swiss coffee trading platform that “that allows for streamlined communications between buyers and sellers related to traceable lots of coffee big and small” according to Daily Coffee News.

They’ve now teamed up to crowdfund the supply of a few Ikawa roasters to coffee farmers who use the Algrano platform. The goal is to raise $20,000 to fund the effort, which will give roasters to producers in three countries to, as the campaign states, “change the unequal access to technology” within the coffee industry.

Most coffee producers cannot afford technology beyond what is necessary to grow, harvest, and process the product. “Many rely on external labs for cupping and grading,” the website explains. “Only a few receive direct feedback from roasters about why they decided to buy or not to buy their coffee.”

Ikawa is donating the first machine, and will match any further purchases one-for-one so that for every roaster funded a second will be supplied. Meanwhile Algrano will round up whatever amount is raised after 30 days to fund the final machine.

Could the companies have just given away the machines themselves? Probably. Am I being needlessly cynical and nitpicky? Almost definitely.

Read the full story here.

He ordered coffee while wearing an AirPod. The barista refused to serve him - via ZDNet

A pair of black headphones lay on a table around a glass of coffee.

Look, just take your headphones out/finish your phone call before ordering your coffee.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve paused your podcast or whatever, it’s rude and it signals to the barista that you don’t care about this modest human interaction.

As the original article says, you can always go to a chain (or that awful Starbucks broom closet) and order from your phone and not speak to anyone if that’s what you want.

Read the full story here.

The week in corporate greenwashing

The actual scheme is only tangentially coffee-related—they recycle coffee pods!—but the article was almost tailor-made for this segment. Subaru is recycling! Subaru loves the earth! Subaru is collecting all your coffee pods and other hard-to-recycle items and turning them into outdoor furniture! Subaru is the best!

Look, as ever, it’s good that Subaru is doing this—recycling is hard and unloved and the 3 million pounds of waste collected so far might have ended up in the ocean and strangled a humpback whale or something.


Subaru is a car company. They manufacture vehicles that emit exhaust fumes and poison the planet. They don’t even build any electric vehicles, for the love of crumbcakes! (They offer some Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle (PZEV) vehicles, which just sounds like a joke.)

In a carbon neutral world, Subaru in its current form will cease to exist. It’s a publicly listed company, so by the definition of modern capitalism its only goal is to make money. If it can spend a few million on a recycling marketing campaign that gets it gushing coverage in newspapers, why wouldn’t it?

Again, not really to do with coffee, but hey the article mentioned it in its headline for SEO purposes so I’m going with it.

Is coffee good for you?

Surprising absolutely nobody, a new study says that sugary coffee drinks are linked to poor sleep in what the article calls “young women”.

This is a genuine article in Reuters: “Nearly half of all young women in a small U.S. study said they were poor sleepers, and those who drank sugary coffee beverages and energy drinks tended to have the worst sleep quality.”

Do we need a study to know this? Drinking caffeine and sugar and whatever is in energy drinks affects sleep?

According to the article there’s also a cyclical effect to all this: people who sleep badly tend to drink more coffee or sugary drinks to stay awake, which then causes poor sleep, etc and so on.

A person sits on a park bench reading a newspaper

What to read

The Coffee Drinker’s Guide To Columbus, Ohio by me!

Do You Know? Erika Vonie also by me!

Cannabis Coffee: Indonesia's Sharia Stronghold Sidesteps Drug Ban by Haeril Halim

5 Cheap(ish) Things To Make The Perfect Cup Of Coffee by Joanne Chen

Read more