Coffee Buying, Uncategorized

Our Most Frequently Asked Question (Hint: Contracts)

February 9, 2018
Every order of green coffee has one shipment date

Genuine Origin has a unique (or dare we say: disruptive) business model. It’s pretty simple, but it’s different from the traditional coffee model — like how Uber is different from how transportation has always worked, and Airbnb is different from how hotels have worked and Seamless is different from delivery. It’s different, and for lots of folks, it’s better.

But being different means some explaining is in order, and we get one question more than any other. So, we thought we’d take three swings at it. Hopefully one of them connects for you. Either way, if you have questions about this, or something else, please let us know in the comments!

Question: Can I contract coffee and have it released/shipped to me in small amounts?

Answer 1: (With puppies)

Imagine you run the Puppy Birthday Café, and every week you go through 10 boxes of Rainbow Puppycupcakes. So on the first of each month, you go to and order 40 boxes. Efficient, right?

Then you think: “I wonder if I could put in one giant order of 120 Puppycupcakes, to make sure the bakery isn’t out of stock next month, but break it up into three shipments, because I don’t need 120 Puppycupcakes right now and I don’t want to pay for that many at once.” (Puppycupcakes ain’t cheap.)

But at, like every other store on the internet, each order can only have one shipment date.

However! The bakers at explain: “Don’t worry! We let you choose the shipping date for your order, and you can make it up to 90 days in the future! Plus you can create as many orders in the system as you like. So for example, you could sit down right now and place three separate orders with respective shipping dates of March 1, April 1 and May 1. So you know your Puppycupcakes are coming! And, you only pay for your Puppycupcakes when they ship from the bakery. So instead of paying for 120 Puppycakes at once, you pay for your March order in March, your April order in April and your May order in May!”

ps: Genuine Origin is in this scenario.

Answer 2: (Sans puppies)

No. If you want coffee, place an order and we’ll send it to you. It’s that simple. If you want 5 deliveries of coffee, place 5 orders. Each order has its own shipment date that you get to select at checkout and that can be between today* and 90 days in the future. When the coffee leaves our warehouse to ship to you, that’s when you pay for it. Until the coffee leaves the warehouse, we think of it as ours — so we don’t charge you weird fees** for it. When it leaves the warehouse, it becomes yours, so that’s when you pay. Cool?***

*For a coffee to ship the day you order it, you need to order it by 1 p.m. ET.

**The only three things you will ever pay for are 1) coffee 2) shipping (unless you order 10 or more boxes and select LTL, in which case it’s free) and 3) a liftgate, if you order one, for $25. But we don’t think of that as a “weird fee,” because you’re actually getting something for your money. (Versus warehousing fees, which is like making you pay rent on the boxes in our warehouse. Which is weird.)

***Maybe you’re thinking: But I want to make sure you still have the coffee I want, when I get around to needing it! To which we say: Place a few orders, so you know you’ll get the number of boxes you need. Or, friend, find a community lot that you love! The whole point of these coffees is that they’re absolutely delicious and always available. We work with the same communities year after year so that each year you can expect a fresh crop of your favorite coffee.

Contracting coffee: Explained with socks

Answer 3: (With socks)

You wouldn’t order 100 pairs of socks from Amazon and then ask Amazon to please send them to you 10 pairs at a time. That’s not how retail works. If you want 10 pairs now, and you only want to pay for 10 pairs now, you order 10 pairs, and they send 10 pairs and you pay for 10 pairs.

ps: Genuine Origin is not like Amazon in this scenario. Because we let you choose your shipping date. And you could set up a bunch of orders and choose different shipping dates for each one, so that 100 pairs could actually show up 10 pairs at a time, and you’ll still only pay for 10 pairs at a time. Plus, we ship 10+ boxes free, without making you pay for a membership. And our boxes have handles. •

Head to the store and try it out for yourself!

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