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BRIAN WATT: Take an extra nickel with you on your Starbucks run. Its coffee prices go up by 5 cents today — the first price hike in two years. Stacey Vanek-Smith takes a sip.
STACEY VANEK-SMITH: That half-caf, no whip, white chocolate grande ice mocha might taste a little less grande this morning.
Today Starbucks is jacking up the price of its best-selling brew. The java giant points to healthcare costs and pricey fuel.
It might sound like a risky move — there’s no lack of competition in the coffee business — but BevMark Consulting’s Tom Pirko isn’t worried.
After all, Starbuck’s pretty much invented the $4 cup a joe.
TOM PIRKO: They were able to push the price of coffee up to a level that was unthinkable. They have tremendous flexibility, because they’re not really selling coffee, they’re selling Starbucks.
And just in case you don’t think 5 cents can make much of a difference consider this: Starbucks brews 227 million gallons of coffee a day.
That’s about 1.8 billion grandes.
I’m Stacey Vanek-Smith for Marketplace.
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