What is the true production cost of serving coffee at your cafe?

When cafe owners do the maths, they often think only in terms of price per kilogram of coffee beans and assume that if they're buying coffee at the lowest cost per Kg from their supplier, they'll come out on top with a healthy profit.

But this isn't necessarily the best approach. In reality, the price per Kg of coffee beans tells you very little about how much it actually costs you to produce coffee for your customers. A far better figure use is cost per cup.

This is because plenty of other factors can affect how much it costs to produce coffee, aside from the price of beans. Factors such as:

  • The amount of coffee in each dose
  • The yield or extraction volume you get out of each shot
  • The amount of coffee you regularly waste (some grinders waste up to 130 grams per kg, which adds up to 5kg a week! )
  • The number of shots per serving of coffee (its worth mentioning that double rizzys will burn a hole in your pocket)
  • The strength of your coffee some beans may have a better cut/strength, even if you are using less coffee per cup.

Pouring latte art

Cost Breakdown

Here are the numbers for café A and café B. 

Café B pays more per kilogram for beans than café A, but wastes less coffee and only needs one shot per 9oz cup of coffee it serves to customers, even though it uses a higher dose than café A. Therefore by considering the factors shown below as part of the overall operating, café B is the one that comes out on top.


Cafe A

Cafe B

Cost kg



Gm p/shot



Wastage grams per kg



Double Shots per kg



Shots per 8oz cup



8 oz cups per kg



Cost per cup 8oz



# of 8oz cups per day



Cost per day



Cost per 7 day week



Cost per year



Savings for Cafe B


note: 20-23 grams of ground coffee yields around 40 to 50 grams of espresso, which equals two shots.

The savings speak for themselves: consider the big picture when calculating production costs, rather than just stopping at how much you paid per kg of beans. For more information on how Pablo & Rusty’s, can support you with high-quality specialty beans, please get in touch.