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Vienna cafes set to raise price of coffee

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Vienna cafes set to raise price of coffee
Photo: APA/Techt
11:20 CET+01:00
Drinking a melange (a coffee with milk foam) in one of Vienna's traditional cafes could soon become a pricey extravagance, as the strong dollar will make importing coffee more expensive.

"Because the price of raw materials has risen, we are forced to increase our prices," Matthias Winkler, the head of the legendary Cafe Sacher told Austrian broadcaster ORF. However, he said he wasn’t worried about losing customers as all cafes would be affected, and the “customer will understand”.

He added that it was not yet fixed when coffee prices would go up but that it would be in 2015.

The historic Cafe Sperl on Gumpendorferstrasse also confirmed that it would be forced to increase the price of a coffee, and Cafe Tirolerhof in the first district said it was currently making a loss on coffee and couldn’t rule out a price increase. A melange in many of Vienna’s traditional and more central coffee houses already costs between €4 and €6 - not a cheap treat by any means.

Other Viennese coffee house bosses said their supply contracts were guaranteed for the time being with fixed purchase prices so they were in no hurry to put up prices. "Coffee is traded on a commodity exchange. It's like a roller-coaster ride," Alfred Flammer of Cafe Central said.

Amir Hawelka from Cafe Hawelka in Dorotheergasse said that his team roast their coffee beans in house and are able to make savings this way.

A recent survey showed that 92 percent of Austrians are coffee drinkers, and 88 percent prefer their cup of Joe at home - but this too will become more expensive with supermarkets and grocery stores also set to increase coffee prices by 20 or 30 cents next week. 

The price of half a kilo of green coffee has risen from around €1.30 to €1.60 since the middle of last year.

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