Do you know who makes Kirkland Colombian coffee? this is one of the questions our readers ask a lot. Well, we´ve got you covered.
The thing about Kirkland’s Signature Brand, sold at Costco retailers, is that you never really know who made the stuff. That’s not to say it’s not any good. Much of what Costco sells is some of the best.
It’s just difficult to figure out who is behind the Kirkland “middle-man” name.
So, who makes Kirkland Colombian coffee? Kirkland Colombian coffee is made by Starbucks and San Francisco Bay Coffee. However, the beans are roasted in Lincoln, California, and there are two companies (Starbucks and San Francisco Bay Coffee) located there that are associated with Kirkland.
Personally, we’re leaning towards Rogers at San Francisco Bay Coffee. The reasoning behind that is we already know that Starbucks is the name behind much of the Kirkland Signature Coffee that Costco sells. However, Starbucks isn’t located directly in Lincoln, California, but on the outskirts.
Also, San Francisco Bay Coffee is associated with the Kirkland Brand and since they’re known for their Colombian coffee roasts, the circumstantial evidence points to Rogers.
The coffee beans originate from Concordia, Colombia, and the roasting process produces a medium roast.
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Why Would Starbucks Not Roast All Of Kirkland’s Coffee?
Costco isn’t picky about who hides behind the Kirkland brand, so long as it is a high-quality producer of consumables or products.
For instance, there are about six or seven different brands behind Costco’s available Kirkland Signature Liquors.
They certainly don’t abide by the one-size-fits-all approach. Maybe Starbucks’ Colombian roasts weren’t up to the standards. Maybe SF Bay cut a better deal, especially since Costco’s coffee—like nearly everything else in a Costco store—is sold in bulk.
Regardless of the outcome, Costco finds a route to that outcome by cutting deals with other brands and marketing those brands under the Kirkland Signature name, usually for a far better price than what that brand normally sells for.
The Kirkland Signature Brand also benefits from Costco’s policy of limiting its profit margin to no higher than 15%.
That allows Costco to sell (what is quite possibly San Francisco Bay Coffee) for extreme discounts.
Buying bulk coffee from Costco usually results in a lot of savings when adjusting costs for the smaller package sales for the brand names behind Kirkland.
That’s part of what makes Costco so successful, is they are willing to break a single brand down into component parts that are backed by a variety of different brands.
That way, If Starbucks makes a delicious dark-roast, Costco isn’t stuck with a garbage-tasting medium-roast.
No, we’re not saying Starbucks’ medium-roast coffee tastes like garbage, just making a point. It also makes it more difficult to pinpoint exactly who is behind each brand.
Why Does Costco Keep It So Close To The Vest?
Costco is fiercely protective of its trade secrets for the purposes of warding off competition. If everyone knew who was behind each Kirkland Signature product, it would be far easier to undercut either Costco or the brand behind the mask.
Unfortunately, there are always trade leaks, CEOs slip up and say the wrong thing at the wrong time, or certain obvious results end up in publicly disclosed expenditures and tax documentation.
Those are the typical reasons that people can discover what brand the Kirkland packaging is hiding. Occasionally, Cosco lets the name out on its own, such as their Kirkland Signature Coffee—at least one line of it anyway—which has the Starbucks logo on it for anyone to see.
That’s another reason why the San Francisco Bay Coffee Company is an excellent candidate behind the Kirkland Signature Colombian Supremo Coffee.
There is no Starbucks logo on those, so it has to come from somewhere and Costco doesn’t roast coffee beans.
What Is Colombian Supremo?
The most obvious feature of Colombian coffee is that it comes from Colombia. As for the word “supremo,” it’s a reference to the fact that these are the largest beans available from the Colombian export trade.
Colombian coffee is arguably some of the best in the world and the supremo beans are well received in the U.S. and other coffee markets around the world.
They’re renowned for their distinct flavoring and aromas that touch on chocolate and fruit.
It’s a testament to how good it is by the fact that Kirkland Signature Colombian Supremo Coffee is a highly-rated, popular, and fast-selling brand of coffee. It doesn’t compete with Starbucks, but well, what does?
Last But Not Least
While San Francisco Bay Coffee may not be the brand behind the Kirkland Signature Colombian Supremo Coffee, the hints are there.
Unless there is a leak, or someone discovers a tax filing discrepancy or Costco itself makes an announcement, it’s not likely we will ever know.
It’s a fun little game to play, however, especially if you’re very enthusiastic about your coffee and can differentiate between the multitude of caffeinated flavors.
Ultimately, it’s a great, big guessing game, and Costco wouldn’t have it any other way.
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