The subscription line is launching with a $24/month beginning rate, and no discounts for long-term subscriptions (the three-month rate is $72, the annual is $288, etc.). Each subscription includes one 8.8-ounce bag of Reserve line coffee, which will be roasted on the second Sunday of each month at the company’s flagship Reserve roastery in Seattle, and shipped within 5-8 days. Says Starbucks:
Designed to provide the highest quality coffee immediately after roasting, these fresh delivery subscriptions ensure customers receive their coffee within three to five days of being roasted, depending on location in the U.S.
Freshness seems to be the differentiator here, since for most U.S. customers, the subscription rate will result in a higher cost than a standalone online purchase. 8.8-ounce bags of the company’s current Reserve coffees are available online individually for between $12.50 and $14.95, with the exception of one coffee that sells for $17.95. Factor in the $5 to $6 for standard shipping to the continental U.S., and the cost for all those coffees would fall below below the $24 monthly rate.
“The Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room has redefined what customers expect from a brick-and-mortar retail experience,” Howard Schultz said in an announcement of the subscription service today. “Combining the magic of this unique retail theater with our digital infrastructure brings two of our best assets together and ensures that customers can experience the world’s rarest coffees in the privacy of their own homes or anywhere else they might want the most premium coffee we offer.”