Rochester coffee shops react to rise in coffee bean prices - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Rochester coffee shops react to rise in coffee bean prices

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- The maker of Folgers and Dunkin' Donuts beans said it was raising coffee prices an average of nine percent on Tuesday. It's the latest result of a drought and fungus in coffee producing countries like Brazil.

Closer to home, some local business owners are considering raising prices to soften the blow of the green bean increase.

"Many of the major retailers are looking at price increases for the first time in the last three years, we're among them," said Rochester's Dunn Brothers owner, Dennis Wong. "We'll spread that out, we'll do what we can to try and mitigate the price increase."

Wong said the spike in bean prices is the largest he's seen in years. Dunn Brothers in Rochester roasts mostly fair trade beans on site, but even its customers could be affected by the increase.

"For commodity pricing it is a very, really bad year, a very unusual year to have that kind of price jump in one year," said Wong.

In April, the International Coffee Organization issued a report saying coffee prices hit a two year high as farmers in Central America battle a coffee disease known as "Roya." It's an airborne fungus which has been infecting coffee plants and causing more than a billion dollars in damage.

So far, Dunn Brothers in Rochester has avoided increasing prices and Wong said it may be awhile before customers see changes at the register.

"I think the key is how do you enjoy that individual cup of coffee and we think the value is still there," said Wong.   

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