I’ll admit to being severely-biased in the negative direction on this company, simply on the product. I hate their coffee — they “over-roast” their beans, and I believe it’s done on purpose for inventory control reasons. See, coffee, once roasted, has a shelf life of about 2 weeks (and really more like 10 days) before its best quality is lost. That makes for mighty distribution headaches and mandates very precise control of how much you roast and how much you distribute to a given store, because if you actually honor what should be expiration dates you’re throwing anything unused in that two-week period away. The problem is that unlike most foods roasted coffee doesn’t turn into something dangerous and thus unmarketable after it expires. It just tastes like crap.
Crash, you are absolutely right. This stuff is living proof that if you can get the right people to rep or word-of-mouth that your product is trendy and hip, there is no limit to the number of suckers that will buy it so as to think they, too, are trendy and hip. And in the US, there are a whole lotta wanna-be self-important people that fit this profile. The stuff does taste like over-boiled sock wash but it has been a good investment precisely due to the baa-baa mentality of its consumers. SBUX will ride out this momentary downturn, so if you have stock, hang on to it, chill and wait over a cup of coffee. But not Starbucks.