How to customise your stock coffee bags on a budget

Tori Taylor
May 22, 2024
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Choosing a packaging solution for your roasted coffee can be a challenge. Particularly when you consider the level of competition within the specialty coffee sector. While custom coffee packaging can help boost brand awareness and mindshare, there are many benefits to investing in stock coffee bags. 

For many specialty coffee brands, stock packaging is a highly cost-effective option. Essentially, stock coffee bags refer to packaging that has been stripped back to the bare essentials. While they preserve the freshness of coffee in the same way as other packaging options, they rarely feature any branding or customisation.

That said, coffee 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. 

So, how can you add brand recognition to your stock coffee bags without breaking the bank? I spoke to Aaron Grimeau, the owner of Expedition Coffee Roasters, to learn more. 

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Affordable ways to brand stock coffee bags

Stock coffee packaging refers to bags and boxes that have been stripped to the bare essentials. It is readily available, accessible, and can be used right away. That said, many brands add their own flair to stock coffee packaging to make it easily recognisable. 

Opt for sustainable stickers

Custom stickers or labels are one of the most cost-effective ways to brand packaging. They can promote the fact that you offer ethically traded organic beans or use sustainable business practices. However, you must ensure there is a way for you to back up these statements.

That said, stickers can be problematic for specialty coffee roasters and consumers concerned with sustainability. The majority of custom printed stickers are made with virgin paper and plastic. Beyond this, they may contain hidden plastics, petrochemicals, and other harsh chemicals, and are not themselves recyclable, compostable or reusable. 

Luckily, eco-friendly alternatives are available, such as:

Biodegradable stickers: These decompose via bacteria or other living organisms. The plant-based materials avoid plastic pollution. 

Compostable stickers: These comprise plant-based materials and can disintegrate into natural elements in a compost environment, leaving no toxicity in the soil. This happens in around 90 days. However, some compostable materials require industrial composting facilities and are not suitable for home composting. 

Recyclable stickers: These are suitable for processing that will make their materials reusable. They are often made of paper or plastic that can be recycled per local regulations.

Use colour

Appealing to the right side of the creative mind has remarkable benefits for brand association and consumer memory. Attractive colour schemes and finishes are a highly effective method for drawing attention to your products. Whether it’s a vibrant, full-colour label incorporating imagery and high-gloss finishes to entice customers or a more discerning selection of colours for heightened impact, the choice of design can significantly enhance product appeal.

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The benefits of investing in stock coffee bags 

When launching Expedition Coffee Roasters, Aaron 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. While many believe that stock coffee bags are best suited to micro-roasters or those just entering the specialty coffee market, Aaron thinks 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,” Aaron 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.” 

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Have you considered the below?

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.

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

Furthermore, we are able to fully customise the size, shape, look, and feel of your labels and stickers to suit your specific business needs.

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

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