When we were putting together the shrub project in the beginning, we had a lot of discussions about packaging, as this would be one thing that made our services useful and unique. Not just the amounts, but the quality of the packaging and its role in protecting the coffee. Over time, we moved away from vac-packing and towards GrainPro. We started offering larger amounts to adapt as our customers grew, while still remaining useful and accessible to smaller customers.
After much thought and discussion we have decided to take a new approach with our packaging. We will now package our 30lb amounts in Grain-Pro bags as well as the 60lb option. We will still offer a vacuum pack option, but we needed to ask ourselves, and many of you, how this was working for people. What we found is that most people are opening their vac-packs right away, or at least in a rather quick turn-a-round from receiving their orders. We feel that that vacuum pack option is better used for coffees that a roaster is planning on holding onto for a time, rather than for immediate use.
We began Coffee Shrub in September 2009, and since that time things have gone in some unanticipated directions. We started off vac packing 15 pound bricks - vac-packing whole lots of coffee and storing them in our warehouse. That worked pretty well, but some of the vac packs became soft over time, and with some coffees that were not selling so well we broke the coffee out of the vac packs and sold it on Sweet Maria's in smaller quantities.
We offer two types of packaging for Coffee Shrub: vacuum packed bricks and bulk shipping in a GrainPro-lined burlap bag. Due to the different levels of time and care spent in these two methods, and the volume they respectively allow, we can offer two levels of pricing.
We are now offering some of our coffees in "bulk" packaging, at least in our own diminutive way. Some of our coffees are now available in 60lb amounts packed in Grain-Pro bags and shipped in re-used packaging (we have a lot of Dormans boxes and what-not and we are always looking for ways to reduce waste). You'll notice that the bulk price reflects a lower price per pound as there is a little less labor involved in getting it out the door. Take a look through the offerings, we hope that you'll find this program to be helpful.
It can be pretty hard during this time of year to find really nice Central American coffees, but we currently have 5 different CA's including a DCF and a new Guatemala offering, Guatemala Finca Florencia Caturra.