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Spiller & Tait’s Build-a-Blend Service a UK First

November 27, 2018

The team at coffee roaster Spiller & Tait have recently launched a ground breaking online coffee blending service, enabling customers to create a bespoke blend of coffee and receive it within only days of roasting.

Having looked at trends in home coffee consumption in the UK, Simon Spiller and David Tait, founders of Spiller & Tait, saw an opportunity to satisfy increasing consumer demand for coffee as an indulgent treat. “Recent research by Allegra reveals that consumers get their coffee fix for a number of reasons. More than half (58%) purchase to satisfy functional needs, 43% for indulgence and 27% for socialising” explained Simon. “We decided to create Build-a-Blend to offer customers a fun and informative online experience, while creating their own bespoke blend to consume themselves, or as a unique gift for friends and family” he added.

"While we’ve seen a sharp rise in demand for our own single origin coffees, our customers continue to favour blended coffees for the consistency and depth of flavour they offer” said David (Why Blend Coffee Beans?). “So, for the past 12 months, we have tested a small range of single origin coffees which we know, when combined in almost any ratios, will make a great tasting blend” he added. The Build-a-Blend tool, which has been developed from scratch by the Spiller & Tait team, provides customers with information to help take the guess work out of coffee blend creation, and enables them to make a blend to match their flavour preferences.

With the launch of Build-a-Blend, customers will choose initially from four single origin coffees to create their blend. The tool provides background information on each single origin coffee, including its likely flavour impact on the blend. A dynamic Taste Profile forecasts the levels of acidity, sweetness, aroma and body for each blend as it’s created online. After choosing between Dark Roast and Medium Roast, the final decision is to select Whole Beans or Ground and then assign a name to your blend, which is then included on the label. “We’ve done our best to provide as much information as possible to remove the guess work out of blend creation, which is a skill that takes professional roasters years to master” explained David. “Feedback from professional testers and a sample of customers during the development process has given us confidence that we can deliver the flavours and taste profiles that customers expect” he added.

"Whether or not this kind of bespoke coffee blending service becomes a disruptor in the home coffee market remains to be seen, although it would be nice!” said Simon. According to the British Coffee Association, Brits are now drinking 95m cups of coffee a day, which has risen from 70m 10 years ago. Much of this increase in demand is for high quality coffee and coffee-related experiences, like roasting beans at home or visiting artisan coffee roasters. “We believe there is pent-up demand for new coffee services which enrich customer experience and coffee knowledge, while also providing a unique and indulgent treat. And, if someone enjoys posting on social media, a personal coffee blend should certainly be Instagram-able! We are not aware of any other service like this for households in the UK, so we are excited to be creating a new niche” added Simon.

Build-a-Blend customers order a minimum of 1kg of their blend, but there is no upper limit on quantities. Each blend is roasted on the day the order is received, or on the following day if received after 1pm. The launch price is £19.95 per kilo, with next day delivery included. “If this service takes off, we are planning to expand the offer in a number of ways. Enhancements being considered include: widening the range of single origin coffees to choose from; providing customers with the opportunity to split a 1kg order into four bags of 250g; enabling the bespoke blend to be repeat-purchased via a subscription; and allowing customers the ability to add a personalised message to their blend label when giving it as a gift” said Simon.

Start building your own coffee blend here

Spiller & Tait is a Devon-based coffee roaster and online retailer specialising in delicious freshly roasted coffee.  Build-a-Blend has been launched in time for Christmas 2018 with a launch price of £19.95 per kilo of green beans.





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