Burger King brews up fancy coffee

The fast-food chain is adding lattes and iced coffee to its menu of Whoppers and fries, but Starbucks isn't worried.

By Aimee Picchi Feb 12, 2013 11:27AM

Credit: Michael Conroy/AP
Caption: A Burger King restaurant sign is shown in IndianapolisWant a latte to go with your Whopper? Burger King (BKW) is rolling out 10 premium coffee drinks, including lattes, iced coffee and flavors such as caramel and mocha, seeking a foothold in the $32 billion coffee industry.

While it might seem like a direct shot at Starbucks (SBUX), the ubiquitous coffee chain known for its pricey double lattes and Frappuccinos, Burger King's move into the realm of fancy coffee will actually profit Starbucks. 

That's because Burger King has partnered with Seattle's Best Coffee, which is owned by Starbucks. In essence, every time a customer orders a cup of Burger King coffee, Starbucks will make a profit, according to USA Today.

But that doesn't mean Burger King isn't gunning for the competition. In this case, its rival happens to be McDonald's (MCD), which has gained fans for its McCafe offerings ranging from cappuccinos to iced caramel mochas. 

"People want to one-stop shop," Malcolm Knapp, a restaurant industry researcher, told USA Today. 

Burger King said the move was designed to appeal to "evolving consumer tastes," meaning that fancy coffee drinks -- considered a luxury only two decades ago -- are now part of the standard American diet. 

It also doesn't hurt that coffee drinks are more profitable than hamburgers or fries, Knapp added. 

Coffee drinking is on the rise. Last year, 54% of people between the ages of 25 to 39 years old said they drank coffee daily, compared with 44% in 2010, according to the Specialty Coffee Association of America

Burger King is introducing the coffee drinks ranging in price from $1 (for a "smooth roast" coffee) to $2.29 for a latte. The drinks will be introduced in March. 

More on moneyNOW

Feb 12, 2013 2:20PM
Good coffee in any restaurant should be a given.  I often judge the quality of a restaurant by its coffee.  Many fail the test.
Burger King has the worst coffee. Maybe it will be better if this other enttity is involved. Mcdonalds coffee is great and can not beat 50 cents for senior coffee. 7-11's coffee is great too.
Feb 15, 2013 5:06AM
I will try it.  I actually like McDonalds coffee.  I drink just black coffee though I'm not into all the Lattes and crap.  The senior deals are also important and appreciated.
Feb 12, 2013 12:37PM

Gevalia is the best coffee in the world, and I will only allow the best of everything for me and my family.


Long live Gevalia coffee!

Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.

Trending NOW

What’s this?


[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market finished the Thursday session on a higher note with the S&P 500 climbing 0.5%. The benchmark index registered an early high within the first 90 minutes and inched to a new session best during the final hour of the action.

Equities rallied out of the gate with the financial sector (+1.1%) providing noteworthy support for the second day in a row. The growth-oriented sector extended its September gain to 1.9% versus a more modest uptick of 0.4% for the ... More