Why you should brand your stock coffee bags

Tori Taylor
April 17, 2024
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For many specialty coffee brands, stock packaging is a highly cost-effective option. Essentially, stock coffee bags have been stripped back to the bare essentials. While they preserve the freshness of coffee in the same way as other packaging options, they don’t feature any branding or customisation.

That said, packaging is about more than just protecting a product; it’s an essential marketing tool. Packaging is meant to emphasise the product’s best features while enticing and educating consumers. Beyond this, it plays a crucial role in the development of any company and its marketing strategy. 

Therefore, branding stock coffee bags—no matter how simple the design—may be beneficial. Aaron Grimeau, the owner of Expedition Coffee Roasters, and Colin Loh from Singapore-based Huggs Coffee share their thoughts. 

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Why you should brand your stock coffee bags

When Aaron launched Expedition Coffee Roasters, he found stock coffee bags to be particularly useful. “They’re usually considered a standard product for most manufacturers, which makes them readily available,” he says, adding that they’re also incredibly budget-friendly.

Many believe that stock coffee bags are best suited to micro roasters or brands that are just entering the specialty coffee market. This is because they allow brands to keep costs low while experimenting with packaging sizes and testing out their target market. However, Aaron believes stock coffee bags can be used at any stage of a coffee business.

“They’re easy to access for a good price, and you don’t need to invest in 25,000 units,” he says. He also believes that stock coffee bags can be used as a business scales up. As a business grows in size, its sales volume increases along with demand. Effective scaling is when revenue increases without adding to resources or costs.

“Coffee roasters can purchase stock coffee bags in larger quantities and adjust the look with custom printed labels,” he explains. “Even when a coffee roaster is fully established and has a broad network, stock bags can get the job done well.” 

Colin, who has worked in the specialty sector for several years, reveals the essential information that Huggs Coffee includes on its custom labels. “For Huggs Coffee, conveying the essence of our brand through labels is not just about relaying facts, but creating an experience,” he says.

“Whether it’s roasting profiles, origin stories, or unique flavour notes, the label acts as a canvas to paint a vivid sensory picture for our consumers, even before they consume it.” Colin explains the brand achieves this by “weaving a narrative that balances origin, craft, and discovery of notes. For example, the use of sensory descriptors and analogies to evoke imagination as opposed to merely stating tasting notes.” 

More importantly, Colin says “we believe a well-designed label should not only inform but also entice.”

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Additional opportunities to use stock coffee bags 

Whether branded or not, companies can use stock coffee bags in several ways. For example, plan coffee bags can be used in:

  • Coffee subscription boxes: These allow customers to receive regular deliveries of high-quality specialty coffee on a weekly or monthly basis. Stock coffee bags are an excellent partner for subscription boxes, as coffee roasters can simply change labels instead of investing in a custom print run. Additionally, using stock coffee bags may encourage customers to focus on the flavour of coffee rather than the branding.
  • Blind tasting boxes: As the bags are unbranded, they will not reveal anything about the coffee inside. Typically, blind tasting boxes contain a variety of sample-sized coffees. Information such as tasting notes and origins is usually omitted to ensure the customer’s experience is unbiased. Blind tasting boxes can help customers deepen their coffee knowledge and appreciation at home. Furthermore, they are a unique way for coffee roasters to entice new customers while engaging with existing ones.

While stock coffee bags are stripped down, they are often available in a variety of standard colours. Aaron suggests investing in a colour that is similar to those used in your brand to ensure there is a connection made between the two. Additionally, he advises that coffee roasters study the costs per unit and the shipping costs involved before investing. This is particularly important for new brands that are working on a tight budget. 

“Make sure you get sample bags so that you can see and feel the quality for yourself. You need to make sure they meet the standards of how you want your brand to be perceived,” he explains. 

While stock bags offer many advantages for coffee roasters, there is no single solution suitable for every business. It will depend on factors such as the sizes your customers want, the branding choices of your closest competitors, and whether your area has easily accessible waste processing facilities.

For example, your access to recycling facilities can affect whether your roastery can limit or eliminate packaging wastage. Depending on what is available, empty bags could be returned for refilling provided they’re in decent condition. Paper packaging could be placed in its entirety in any standard recycling bin. Shipped bioplastic stock bags can be re-posted directly to you for responsible disposal.

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What are stock coffee bags?

Stock coffee packaging is easily accessible and can be used immediately. It’s minimal and features no designs, allowing brands to add custom-printed stickers, labels, or stamps if needed. They are produced in mass amounts and are available in various standard shapes and sizes. Although they are available in a range of sizes and shapes, it is up to the roaster or coffee shop to apply their own branding once they receive the bags. Most importantly, stock coffee bags provide the same essential functions as custom packaging: preventing the beans from exposure to light, moisture, oxygen, and heat. 

Affordable, versatile, and readily available stock coffee packaging allows businesses to remain agile while continuing to offer coffee with all its original, unimpaired characteristics. At MTPak Coffee, we’ve developed a range of fully recyclable stock bags that feature a ziplock seal and degassing valve. These coffee pouches are available in 8 unique colours.

Additionally, our stock coffee bags are available in a wide range of sizes and packaging materials, including recyclable, compostable, and biodegradable stock coffee bags. 

For a full breakdown of stock coffee bag prices, contact us.

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