Is Speciality Coffee Worth The Price?

Money matters, so let’s find out if UK speciality coffee is worth the price!


Speciality coffee costs more than a tub of instant. Just gotta say it. We’re not into jargon at Two Chimps, so we’re telling you fair and square.

Buuut… that bag of speciality coffee does so much more than your instant! It tastes a darn sight better, too. Because when you spend a little more on artisan joe, you get top-quality coffee that’s fresh, fairly traded and packed with scrummy flavour!

Red coffee mug on black and white coffee table


What is speciality coffee?

Speciality coffee is the best kind of coffee you can buy. This is coffee that’s carefully grown, exquisitely flavoured and naturally sweet. It’s usually ethical and small-batch roasted by indie roasteries like Two Chimps.

In short, this is the coffee lover’s coffee!

Close up of roasted speciality coffee beans


Tell me more… what makes this coffee better?

To answer this Extremely Important Question, we’re going to take a sideways glance at commodity coffee.

Commodity coffee is the low-grade stuff you find in instant coffees and most cheap chain café cups. It comes from speed-grown, machine-picked robusta coffee beans and usually tastes bitter and grainy. It’s not the coffee to knock your socks off!

Commodity coffee scores less than 80 points on the official coffee grading scale. Speciality coffee, meanwhile, scores 80 points or above.

Professional coffee tasters (called Q Graders) award a coffee the speciality crown when the whole process is top-notch. When the beans are grown with love and care, and the flavours are utterly OUTSTANDING. Are you wearing socks? Take a sip of speciality coffee, and you won’t be for much longer…


Speciality v commodity coffee infographic


Benefits of speciality coffee beans

Just a few reasons why you’re going to love your artisan coffee…

Out-of-this-world flavour

Q Graders test (‘cup’) coffees on rather a lot of factors:

  • Flavour
  • Aftertaste
  • Acidity
  • Sweetness
  • And more…

If you’re wondering whether speciality coffee is worth the price, we urge you to take a sip. Good delicious breath-taking, isn’t it? You can taste the full flavour, the balanced acidity, the natural sweetness.

The pro tasters thought so, too!

With their ethically sourced arabica beans, speciality coffees never fail on the flavour front! We have the farmers to thank here. It’s their careful hand-picking that guarantees we get perfectly ripe, naturally sweet coffee beans. No bitterness here!

Coffee grower on the André Sanches Estate Coffee in Brazil


Small-batch roasting

Make the switch to speciality coffee, and you’ll almost certainly get freshly roasted coffee. Choose Two Chimps, and you definitely will! Stick with instant, and it’s the bulk-roasted stuff.

Skilled speciality roasters like our Andy roast your arabica beans by hand. This is important: it means we can tailor every roast. And bring you gorgeous flavour every time.

Roaster inspecting coffee beans on roaster sampling tray


Paying the farmers a fair price

Fresh coffee costs more than commodity. But this tells you something important: that the growers are getting a fair price.

Did you know that here at Two Chimps, it’s our standard principle to pay between 30 and 150 per cent more than the going rate? This helps make sure growers in coffee belt countries receive a high price and the chance to invest in their business. We source as directly as possible, too, which means less of the payment gets lost along the way.



Scoot over to commodity coffee for a second, and you’ll find the C-price rather than direct trading. The C-price is how commodity coffee brands buy coffee on the New York Stock Exchange. This quantity-driven price fluctuates alarmingly and means commodity coffee farmers receive unstable incomes.



These are our top three reasons why, yup, speciality coffee is worth the price. Need more? They exist!



How much does speciality coffee cost?

Hmm… how long is a piece of string? Just like almost everything money-related, stating one clear cost is impossible.

Let’s do some investigating…

Woman in jeans and grey jumper holding a red coffee mug


According to the Specialty Coffee Retail Price Index, the average price for speciality coffees in September 2021 was $28.64 per pound. The Index focuses on US roasters, however, and takes prices from the lowest and highest roasteries in the country.

Here in the UK, a 250g bag of speciality usually costs between £7 and £13, probably a little more for exclusives and micro-lots. At Two Chimps, you can buy a full-sized bag of freshly roasted loveliness for £8.95. And you always receive FREE First Class delivery. Because free things are nice, yes?

three bags of two chimps coffee

And how long will that bag last? If you make one filter coffee a day, you’ll get through about 140g of coffee each week. So you could try a weekly 250g bag? Gives you some extra for when friends pop round.

This means your single-origin coffee delivery will cost £465.40 per year. Pretty good, right? Especially when you remember that ordering a daily takeaway cup will set you back £1,000 (plus) over the year…

cost of takeaway coffee vs cost of making coffee at home information sheet


What affects the price of coffee?

Speciality coffee cost depends on many factors…

  • The weather that year
  • Cost of shipping
  • Are you buying decaf?
  • Country of origin
  • Etc. etc.
Coffee sacks of arabica beans


All arabica coffee prices increased in 2021 after Brazil, the world’s largest producer of coffee, suffered its worst frost in over two decades. Global shipping prices have been causing problems, too.

This doesn’t just affect the cost of arabica coffee – robusta beans also went up in price. Some instant coffees shot up by as much as a third last year, did you know?

But you don’t need to buy instant commodity coffee to save money! Why not create a personal coffee plan with Two Chimps? You’ll save £1 on every bag…

Outside Two Chimps Coffee roastery


Is fresh coffee worth the price?

We’re not going to sit here and say you Must Buy Speciality. Everyone’s budget is different, and what you spend your pennies on is up to you (but proper coffee is always a good shout!).

Whether you’re treating yourself to a bag or fancy setting up a subscription, it’s worth spending that little bit extra to get the best.

Fairly traded, ethically sourced speciality coffee gives back to the farmers and takes care of the planet. It’s picked, roasted and packed by hand, and shown a whole lotta love along the way. And the flavour? It’s something else! Fresh, vibrant, full-bodied…


Yup, speciality coffee is worth the price!

White Two Chimps gift box tied with black ribbon fixed with gift note


Love good coffee? Like a spot of money saving? Then a personal coffee subscription is the answer!




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