Starbucks teams up with Green Mountain Coffee

Mar 10, 2011

Single-serve coffee is in vogue.  Seattle-based Starbucks says that's the motivation behind a long-awaited deal with Vermont's Green Mountain Coffee, which the companies signed today.  It's part of Starbuck's strategy for continued growth in the US and Canada. 

According to Seattle Times writer Melissa Allison, Starbucks has had its eye on Green Mountain Coffee for quite a while.  They are the parent company of what is by far the most-popular line of instant espresso machine on the market, Keurig. Those machines have small pods that get inserted into them and Starbucks Spokesman Alan Hilowitz says Starbucks is becoming the exclusive provider of the pods for Green Mountain's Keurig machines.

"The majority of the growth in the coffee category in the US now is really in the single serve-space.  And a lot of customers wanted to just be able to enjoy their coffee in a single serve format," Hilowitz says, adding that the deal is a logical next step, after Starbucks resounding success with its premium instant coffee, Via. 

Tully's and other roasters already make pods for the Keurig machines. Starbucks will no longer make pods for Kraft's Tassimo system.  Its agreement with Kraft expired March 1st.