Thursday, September 20, 2012

Starbucks' Verismo Brings Premium Taste to Single Serve Brewing Machines

Photo Credit: CNW Group/Starbucks Coffee Company

In 1971, Starbucks has become the world's leading coffee chain as it forever turned a simple pick-me-up into a premium buying experience each morning. While a trip to one of their almost 20,000 cafes is a routine for many at some point in a given day, Starbucks has also been setting itself up as a brand as close as a kitchen or pantry cupboard. Selling blends of beans for conventional coffeemakers, the instant coffee market was also filled by the Starbucks VIA brand in recent years. Aside from loose ground coffee and instant blends, the fast-growing single serve market has become the focus of the Starbucks branding. Experts in turning quality coffee into a widely desired consumer good, Starbucks wants to redefine the single serve brewing machine market with the Verismo System by Starbucks.

Derived from Italian for realism, Verismo is the new identity Starbucks wants home or office brewing systems to deliver their blends of coffee from one of two machines. Available right now for $199 in four different colours on the Starbucks on-line store, the 590 (pictured deep down in this article) is designed to introduce customers to a premium coffee drinking experience from a variety of specialized pods. A more expensive $399 V585 machine (pictured above in this article) will also be sold at a later date.

  Described by Starbucks as a "breakthrough" in single serve brewing, the Verismo System is most unique from existing processes for the fact it incorporates high-pressure technology. Using the Swiss-engineered pressurization, the Verismo System brewing machines can produce a high quality cup of latte or espresso coffee.

At first, Starbucks was associated with the Kraft-owned Tassimo single serve coffee system. Starbucks brand coffee was sold in Tassimo discs until early 2011 and soon jumped ship to the leading rival Keurig. Sold since late last year in Keurig K-Cups, Starbucks introduction of their own brewing system is expected to complement the popular single serve choice as well as their VIA instant coffee for consumers. Starbucks president, Channel Development Jeff Hansberry gave proof to the importance of the single serve coffee maker market saying that "Sales of single cup brewers was up 168 percent* this year over last,". Entering a market already ruled by three major players along, Hansberry described the entrance of Verismo System as a winning solution when it comes to quality and technology. "Starbucks is passionate about coffee and passionate about innovation," said Hanberry.

Photo Credit: CNW Group/Starbucks Coffee Company

As before-mentioned, the Verismo System by Starbucks brewing machines will accommodate various pods. Brewed Verismo pods includes Starbucks Roast Spectrum of Blonde, Medium and Dark variety while the signature Espresso Roast will be part of the launch of the new coffeemaker. Milk pods will also be available separately to help coffee drinkers in obtaining the ideal flavour of java-based beverage. In coming months, Starbucks has plans to release seasonal varieties of coffee in the Verismo pods such as Christmas Blend for limited periods.

The Verismo pods are available for purchase on the Starbucks store website and will be sold in Canada through Williams Sonoma retailers in September as well as in Home Outfitters stores early in October. Verismo System by Starbucks pods are being sold in packs that will serve 8-12 beverages depending on the type. Coffee pods ranging between $11.95 to $12.95 in Canadian funds, the Verismo compatible pods will also be present in the Starbucks locations by the middle of October.


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