What Are Drip Coffee Bags?

Janice Kanniah
January 6, 2021
drip coffee bag

Portable, compact, and easy to use, drip coffee bags have widespread appeal for specialty roasters who are looking to grow their customer base and offer flexibility in the way that consumers drink their coffee.

Drip bags can be consumed at home or on the go. They can be used by roasters to distribute samples of new coffee blends and varieties, to test a certain market, or even entice new customers.

To find out more about the benefits of drip coffee bags and how roasters can integrate them into their line of products, I spoke with Laura Fornero, Digital Projects Manager at Producer Roaster Forum.

See also: Are Quad Seal Pouches Suitable For Coffee Packaging?

drip coffee pouch in mug

What Are Drip Coffee Bags & What Do They Do?

First invented in Japan in the 1990s, drip coffee bags are small pouches of ground coffee held in folded paper stands that can be suspended over cups.

Each bag is small and flat before it’s filled with coffee (usually no more than 11g), making them easy and efficient to store. They have soft yet robust filters that are able to withstand knocks and bumps in transit.

The appeal of drip coffee bags lies in the simplicity of their use. To brew a single cup of coffee, consumers open the pouch and remove the filter bag, tear off its top, and shake it to level the coffee inside. 

Each handle is then placed over the sides of the cup, and hot water is slowly poured over the grounds. The filter and wet coffee bed is then discarded after use.

“They’re great for brewing coffee on the go, taking to the office, or for handing out samples,” Laura explains. “To make a cup of coffee, all that’s needed is hot water and a mug.”

Drip bags can be found everywhere, from grocery and convenience stores to cafés and coffee conventions. They can either be bought ready-filled or be filled with coffee at home.

coffee pouch over glass

Why Should Roasters Offer Drip Coffee Bags?

In 2019 the University of Economics in Katowice, Poland, published an article on the international coffee market in which they examined how market trends are shifting to meet the expectations of consumers.

The article outlines how, today, consumers expect coffee products that are both easy to access, and quick and simple to prepare. As a result, demand is increasing for convenient coffee options that can be consumed on the go.

However, at the same time, it found that coffee consumers refuse to compromise on quality, with premium quality coffee favoured over cheap instant alternatives. Despite the economic impact of Covid-19, coffee consumers are showing no signs of cutting back on the quality of the coffee they purchase. 

In August 2020, a survey conducted by Caravela Coffee found that 83% of large coffee roasters were already at or were forecasted to be above pre-Covid levels within the next six months.

Meanwhile, research indicates that in times of adversity, people will cut back on bigger purchases like cars and designer clothing, yet they’re less likely to cut back on affordable luxuries that offer instant gratification, such as specialty coffee.

Drip bags align with these trends and offer a perfect solution for roasters looking to grow their customer base. Not only does the single-use, hands-off brewing process conform to new rules on hygiene and minimising contact, it also suits the busy lifestyles of modern-day coffee consumers.

drip coffee bags

What To Consider When Selling Drip Coffee Bags

Drip coffee bags have been around since the 1990s, but it’s taken a while for specialty coffee roasters to incorporate them into their line of products. For one, finding the right grind size and material can be a challenging process. 

Additionally, most specialty roasters are keen to show a commitment to sustainability, however, the single-serve nature of drip coffee bags makes this difficult. 

To tackle this dilemma, Laura recommends working with a packaging expert, such as MTPak Coffee, that can offer environmentally friendly compostable or recyclable coffee bags. Kraft paper is a popular choice for drip coffee that will be consumed in a short timeframe as they are fully recyclable and biodegradable, yet do not preserve freshness for as long as other materials.

For roasters, it’s important to choose packaging for drip bags that reflects the quality of the product inside. Ground single origin coffee, for example, should include information about the region in which the coffee was grown, the roast date, and the roast profile to give customers a sense of what to expect. 

Although there is limited room when compared to a regular coffee bag, roasters should also try to include other points, such as tasting notes and sustainability certifications. 

mtpak packaging

Drip coffee bags have become a popular choice among consumers, as both an on-the-go solution and a quick fix while at home. Not only do they suit the busy modern lifestyle, they also offer roasters a way to broaden their customer base by making high-quality coffee more accessible.

At MTPak Coffee, we offer customisable drip coffee bags, whether you’re selling them individually or in bulk. We have a range of options, including recyclable and compostable bags complete with optional degassing valves, zip locks, foil ties, and clear windows.

We can also help you communicate a commitment to responsibility and quality by including the most important information on your packaging, from origin to flavour notes.

For more information on our drip coffee bags, contact our team here.

MTPak Coffee

Photo credits: Caphetuiloc

Stay updated about MTPak Coffee’s products and services. Sign up to our free newsletter.

Janice Kanniah
Janice Kanniah

Janice is freelance writer based in South Africa and has written for MTPak Coffee since 2020. Her interests are in writing about sustainability, the circular economy, and the future of the environment.

MTPak recommends