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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

No More Coffee Beans at Walmart!?

No More Coffee Beans at Walmart?

No More Coffee Beans at Walmart?
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

My wife buys my coffee beans for me when she buys groceries most of the time.  She know my favorite kinds.  I like dark roast Starbucks from Walmart or City Kid from Target.  I have made coffee from whole beans for over 15 years now, and am on my 3rd coffee grinder.  Grinding fresh coffee beans just before brewing means you'll get a fresh cup of coffee with great coffee flavor.

I came home from work to learn from my wife that Walmart did not have and coffee beans for sale.  They had removed their bulk dispensers and did not have any prepackaged whole beans either.  What's up with that!

Is Keurig Replacing Whole Beans?

Are Keurig k-cups replacing whole coffee beans?
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

My first thought is the Keurig k-cups may be replacing whole coffee beans.  There is more profit to be made selling k-cups than selling whole beans.  If you figure out how much ground coffee is in a k-cup and how much it sells for, you'll see the opportunity for profit.  It takes a lot of shelf space to offer lots of different kinds of coffee beans, and the bulk coffee bean dispensers also take a lot of room.  Walmart must have concluded that they could make more money from that shelf space by selling something else.

Do People Have Time for Great Coffee Anymore?

Consumer demand must also be a factor in Walmart's move to stop selling whole coffee beans.  Walmart must not be concerned that people will shop elsewhere to be able to buy whole coffee beans.  This is probably a reasonable conclusion.  The grocery bill is significantly lower at Walmart, so the hassle of picking up coffee beans at another store is not that big of a deal.

Do people have time for great coffee anymore?
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

Perhaps not that many people grind coffee beans at home these days.  There is a Keurig machine at my office, and it is very convenient.  I would say the coffee quality is good, but not great.  Keurig coffee is a step below what I can make at home from fresh ground beans, or what you can get in a coffee shop.  But convenience is important to most people:

  • You can just pop a k-cup in your Keurig and get coffee in about 1 minute
  • You can try different roasts and flavors easily
  • You never have to see or touch a used coffee filter
  • There are no coffee grounds to store, measure, clean-up, etc.

There are certainly advantages to Keurig, but I'm staying with my coffee beans.  Here's how I use whole coffee beans to make great coffee at home every day.

Update:  I checked Walmart today and found that they have a small set of coffee bean dispensers (9 varieties) and a few bags of whole coffee beans available.  So you can find coffee beans at Walmart just not much selection.  Times are changing in the coffee world.  I will shop where I can get whole beans or order online!  It is surprising that whole bean coffee is not popular enough to merit much shelf space.

Walmart has only a few whole bean coffee choices
Image source: Dr. Penny Pincher

Copyright © 2014 by Dr. Penny Pincher.  All Rights Reserved. Coffee Maker Journal


  1. I was shocked to see no coffee at walmart. Then I found which tell me more about coffee variety available.

  2. Well the saga continues. Because up until November 2016 Walmart in Queensbury had a selection of quality whole beans in bags. Starbucks and Seattle's Best those products are gone. Two thumbs down to Walmart!!!!

  3. Have you checked out this great place to buy gourmet coffee beans online? They are called got your 6, always have fresh beans, and all proceeds go to military!