BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Seven Haggen and Top Food & Drug stores have launched a new coffee concept, Terravida, fresh from their home turf here — and other grocery chains may be next.
Four stores, two each under the Top and Haggen banners, have opened full-blown Terravida Coffee operations, which are run out of the grocery stores by Terravida employees. Three others — all Haggen — have opened licensed Terravida Coffee kiosks, operated by the grocery chain, in their Market Street prepared foods areas. A fourth licensed kiosk opened recently in a Top store as well.
The coffee company provides recipes, logos and training to the Haggen employees who run the kiosk. “We want to make sure the experience [for customers] is the same from location to location,” said Lisa Hervieux, general manager at Terravida.
Haggen and Top have also recently begun selling bulk Terravida coffee in their coffee aisles and are heavily promoting it with sale prices, featuring it on flyers and conducting tastings.
The partnership between Haggen and Terravida came about when Starbucks began pulling out of the grocery stores, preferring to pursue other lines of business. “I'm sure Haggen would love to continue its relationship with Starbucks as the leases come up,” said Hervieux, adding that she would love it herself if they switched to Terravida.
Terravida operates as any other coffee chain does, with standard offerings as well as its own array of beverages. These include an almond toffee truffle (chocolate, almond, caramel and espresso), a peanut butter mocha (made with fresh peanut butter) and a caffeine-free blended white chocolate-lemon drink. Prices are comparable to Starbucks. A latte, for example, runs $2.40 (12 ounces), $2.95 (16 ounces) and $3.25 (20 ounces) compared with $2.65, $3.20 and $3.50, respectively, at local Starbucks shops.
The food served through Terravida depends on the type of location. The licensed kiosks carry product that has been baked in-store; the freestanding operations carry local brands such as Mostly Muffins and Lake Champlain gourmet chocolate. Savory products are under consideration.
Many of Terravida's products are fair trade and organic, “but there are also some conventional coffees, because it's important to me to pick coffees depending on taste,” said Hervieux. The stores also use Monin syrups, she pointed out, which are 100 percent natural.
Other grocery stores may have Terravida stores or kiosks soon. “In my mind, the Pacific Northwest is a saturated market when it comes to coffee,” said Hervieux, “but when you get to the Rockies, it's wide open, and there are places where people still drink coffee out of a can.
“I think this would really be successful in a franchise, and that's certainly something I would love to see us do as we develop and work with the grocery side of the market.”