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Old 09-10-2011, 11:38 PM   #1
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Dunkin Donuts Coffee - or is it?

Around here DD coffee is the best. You wouldn't believe the lines at every DD shop in Eastern MA. on a workday morning.

Their coffee is legendary around here and they sell a lot of ground coffee in one pound bags in their shops.

You can also buy DD coffee in supermarkets and warehouse stores in this area. This is where we get our coffee. Costco sells DD coffee in 2.5 pound bags for a pretty good price. We like this coffee.

We had dinner at SIL's tonight and met her son's new girlfriend who just happens to work for DD. Well, I was floored to learn that the DD coffee sold outside their shops is NOT THE SAME COFFEE! DD licenses their name to Smuckers, who distributes the coffee to outlets outside the DD shops. The coffee is not the same blend.

So I checked the Dunkin' Donuts Coffee | Now Available in a Coffee Aisle Near You website and found this statement in the tiniest print at the bottom of the page: "Product formulation and packaging may change."

It's not that the coffee is bad, it's that I feel I was mislead. I consider this a highly questionable practice even though I'm sure their lawyers have assured them it's legal.
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Old 09-10-2011, 11:51 PM   #2
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Don't mess with the coffee, man...that is very dangerous.
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Old 09-11-2011, 12:02 AM   #3
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as questionable as fake Rolex watches under different legal/moral rules, I also agree. Why not just launch your own brand, "Shmucker's Coffee?"

I often see DD coffee at the top in taste tests, but am not a regular customer.
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Old 09-11-2011, 03:27 AM   #4
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I was under the impression that all of the coffee was from Folgers and that Smuckers owns Folgers. Who used to make the DD coffee?
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Old 09-11-2011, 05:16 AM   #5
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I don't know about the packaging, but the "formulation" is dependent upon a very volatile crop and a specific blend of coffee beans (types and grades), some of whom may not always be available year round on a world market. Also consider that many growing locations are politically unstable. Consistency of this product is most likely problematic, and they are saying so in legalese.
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Old 09-11-2011, 06:13 AM   #6
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Wow. I find that practice highly questionable, too. I loved DD's coffee, but their chain died here. They sell the grounds in our stores though. And of course I assumed it was the same stuff they dumped into the coffee machine at their stores. That's an easy one to cover up, too, as any off taste would likely be blamed on the buyer's coffee machine. That just doesn't seem right.
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Old 09-11-2011, 07:07 AM   #7
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I grew up in Maine and Dunkin' was always quite popular there. I was floored though to see the sheer number of Dunkin' stores in the Boston suburbs Weymouth and Quincy where I was visiting a friend. I took her to work one morning and on the 5 mile trip we passed 4 and stopped at the 5th, because that was the one she liked best, LOL.

Yeah, that seems misleading. The line that I have heard told as to why the coffee wasn't quite the same was that people at home don't have a professional brewer, but now it seems to be more than that.
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Old 09-11-2011, 09:45 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Selkie View Post
I don't know about the packaging, but the "formulation" is dependent upon a very volatile crop and a specific blend of coffee beans (types and grades), some of whom may not always be available year round on a world market. Also consider that many growing locations are politically unstable. Consistency of this product is most likely problematic, and they are saying so in legalese.
Selkie hit the nail on the head.

Grade 3 (canner grade) coffee beans are traded on the NYSE (ticker symbol KC) as a futures commodity. The green coffee beans are purchased by large commercial roasting houses who blend and roast the beans to achieve a specific result. This would apply to national brands especially.

Higher grade beans are only available in small quantities by comparison. Prices for these greens can soar upwards of $40 per pound. Specialty brands and smaller regional roasters would more commonly handle this type of product.

.40
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Old 09-11-2011, 09:51 AM   #9
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that's it. that settle's it for me. i'm gonna go buy that lemur poop coffee. at least i'll know where it came from.
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Old 09-11-2011, 10:39 AM   #10
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ROFL, buckytom!

Usually, licensing contracts have a long laundry list of contingency clauses. And usually, there is a high level of oversight to enforce those contingencies. I'd feel better about it if I knew that Dunkin Donuts was exercising its obligation to supervise Smucker's factories to produce and package a product of DD integrity.

On the other hand, their contract might well read, "Smuckers can put whatever crap blend they want into our packages, because customers are shmucks who'd never know the difference. Just send us a yearly check for the rights." We just don't know...
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