Is Coffee Roasting Profitable? (Detailed)

powdered coffee beans on a silver cup

Coffee roasting can be a profitable business if done the right way. 

Any business, including coffee roasting businesses, has the tendency to rocket up or completely fail based on the business strategies that are being used.

The coffee business is very profitable but it has a lot of challenges that one will encounter. Some businesses can go to the extreme range of profit which is 300,000 to 400,000 a year.

Whether or not your business has the potential to grow in the market heavily depends on planning and implementation.

What is a Coffee Roasting Business?

Coffee roasting business is the direct way of selling roasted or brewed coffee to the customers by producing coffee from scratch.

A coffee roasting business can be set up with the intention of catering in large quantities to retailers, coffee shops or grocers. It can also work as a single-handed business that sells coffee directly to the customers.

Building a coffee roasting business comes with several stages which need to be kept on the hook and given detailed attention to.

To put it in simple words, the coffee roasting business is creating a new brand of coffee with the required resources.

Is it hard to start a coffee roasting business?

Any business, regardless of the product and selling scheme, is difficult to start.

The coffee roasting business needs a lot of planning. In fact, a day or two, even a week is not enough when you’re planning to start a business of your own, wanting to earn maximum profit.

To start a coffee business one needs to gather enough knowledge and resources, starting from researching beans, financing costs, marketing strategies and creating prominent brand value.

Although starting a beverage business may seem hard, these particular questions may help you declutter your thoughts around building your coffee roasting business:

  • What will be the name your business?
  • Who will be in charge of the technical tasks?
  • What will be the framework/structure of the business?
  • What will be the location eg: urban/ rural?
  • What bank or financial companies will be aligned with business?
  • What is the average intake of employees?

These questions are tricky to crack and will take a lot of time to give a proper shape to.

Investing time and energy into building your business is the very first step of starting it, and it will be anything easy.

How do I Start a Small Coffee Roasting Business?

If you have the perfect coffee roasting business idea that’s been squealing in your head all day, it’s probably a great choice to launch that business and understand the requirements to start it.

A photograph of roasted beans
The sharp brown texture on your beans says it’s finely roasted!

Three things that are extremely crucial to start your coffee business are:

  • researching
  • creating
  • marketing

When you trail around these keywords, you’re much likely to succeed when planning ahead of your business.

The steps to start your small coffee business includes:

Strategizing

If your idea about starting a coffee roasting business is crystal clear, all you need to do is plan wisely to launch your objective.

After finding the answers to the what, who, and how questions, you should plan and strategize the framework of your business to better analyze the expected profit margins.

Budget

This step is very crucial as it involves buying, packaging, storing and managing the business. Creating an investment plan and curating a budget can help you make necessary spendings in the most cost effective way.

One can understand the initial value of a business vs the future it might have, when following a correct map of financial expenses. A budget will also help cut costs here and there when necessary

Research

Researching coffee beans is a crucial step that cannot be skipped. 

What kind of roasting methods will you be using, what kind of beans are more or less profitable, what marketing tactics to use or discard; these are very essential when launching a business.

Coffee is profiled based on it’s taste and the regions it is produced in. You’d want to know what beans you’re working with when sourcing them from the producers.

If you’re curious to know if coffee is found in a specific region, this article is for you!

Researching about roasting equipment is very essential too. Equipment quality is essential for your coffee business to produce high-quality output and cut down costs.

Marketing

Marketing your business is crucial to draw attention to your brand and gain customers.

Whether you’re planning to hire someone to market the value of your brand or want to create a digital platform to promote your products, you should consider your goals and timeframe for achieving them.

To know the best medium for marketing your products, you should get to know your audience and show consistency.

In addition, identify your competitors, their strengths, and weaknesses, and use the data to get past them. Understanding customer demands in your local area, acknowledging the lack of an ingredient, offering unique experiences etc can improve marketing schemes.

So, invest in marketing your coffee business!

Is Roasting Your Own Coffee Worth It?

If you have enough time to spare and make coffee at any point of your weekend, it’s totally worth it to roast your own coffee.

Roasting your own coffee will allow you to enjoy the most flavorful hot drink which you otherwise wouldn’t get your hands on if you go with an instant pack.

Roasting your coffee once a week will help you use it throughout the week as the flavors stay infused for a couple of days.

I like roasting my own coffee because I can decide how to prepare the beans and apply a different method in brewing them.

That way, you can bring out the sharp and raw flavors when roasting your own coffee.

Can You Roast Coffee at Home?

Yes, you can roast your coffee at home.

Even though a lot of people may think it is difficult to roast beans at home, knowing the right processes can help you figure your beans and ways to roast them the right way.

Also, roasting your coffee depends on the techniques and equipment you choose. There are two types of roasters you can use at home:

  • air roasters
  • drum roasters

Coffee roasters work differently according to their size.

A drum roaster is larger in size compared to an air roaster. A small roaster can work great to give you fine roasts while a drum roaster can roast for more time.

One can find either of the two roasting machines at home which does the job just as easy as you’d have it done at any store!

Watch this video to learn more about how to roast coffee at home.

Beginners Guide on How to Roast Coffee at Home

How Long Does It Take to Roast Coffee?

The amount of time behind each roasting process depends on the size of bean batches.

A small batch of beans would typically take 10 minutes to roast and a large one would take 16 minutes.

The method of roasting coffee is pretty simple. All you have to do is take the green coffee and turn to the roaster machine and heat it until it turns brown.

Is Roasting Coffee At Home Cheaper?

Roasting coffee at home is a lot cheaper.

In fact, you’ll save 50% to 75% from the cost if you’re roasting your coffee at home.

So what makes roasting coffee at home so cheap that it is otherwise quite impossible in any other way?

Well, roasting coffee at home does not come with a tax or included VAT and the other miscellaneous costs that often make coffee roasting so overpriced.

Once you invest in your roasting machine, you don’t really have expenses to worry about when it comes to brewing and making coffee.

In addition, roasting at home is much more flexible in terms of experimenting with coffee beans and trying different techniques too.

This, in fact, helps to find the right technique of roasting your coffee suitable to your preference.

How Do You Price A Cup Of Coffee?

You need to factor in labor, service, utilities, and other expenses to arrive at a reasonable price for a cup of coffee.

Water, cream, milk, sugar, beans are the solid items that make up your coffee. These should be factored into the price of your coffee too!

In other words, all the costs should be considered and factored in to arrive at the best price of a cup of coffee. Adding the percentage of profit and the markup will eventually lead you to have a per cup price for your coffee.

How Much Does It Cost For Starbucks To Produce A Cup Of Coffee?

Starbucks spend a dollar for every cup of coffee!

It takes $1 for Starbucks to produce a cup of coffee.

So why are Starbucks coffee way over their cost price?

Well, the cost for the cashier, support staff and barista, their service and benefits also come with the coffee that you’re sipping.

Starbucks also comes with different operational overhead expenses, advertising and administrative effort. And, of course, rent and utilities!

Few directions to selling your coffee and earning maximum profit include:

  • developing brand image
  • creating an e-commerce platform
  • crafting the business plan
  • determining your coffee supplier
  • content marketing
  • excellent service
  • valuing loyal customers.

In Conclusion

Coffee roasting is a profitable business as long as you plan it well.

It is a promising business idea with a high possibility of earning.

However, there are a few that you must consider before starting on this venture such as supplier, equipment, and marketing effort which are all basic factors when putting up a business.

True enough, it’s such a huge effort to start a coffee roasting business but it’s all worth it in the end once you see the fruit of your labor.

So, plan your coffee roasting well and don’t hesitate to brainstorm with friends to gather ideas and gain moral support.

Matt Marshall

As I learn more and more about coffee and coffee products I want to share all my learnings with you here on this website. I hope you find my articles useful and entertaining to read.

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