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Costa Set to Boost Capacity to Meet Future Demand

16 JULY 2015

The UK’s favourite coffee shop reveals plans for estimated £36 million new roastery

Costa, the UK’s favourite coffee shop, today announced that it will be building a brand new roastery to support its national and international growth ambitions. The new roastery will be built in Basildon and will operate in conjunction with Costa’s existing roastery in Lambeth, reinforcing Costa’s British heritage and its ongoing commitment to locating its roasting operations in the UK.

Quality coffee is driving customer demand, meaning that Costa’s Lambeth roastery on Old Paradise Street, SE11 (established by the Costa brothers in 1984) is roasting coffee 24 hours a day, 5 days a week. Costa has roasted its much-loved premium Mocha Italia blend in Lambeth for more than 30 years and the new roastery in Basildon will help to meet expected demand in 2020 and beyond.

Costa will be investing an estimated £36 million in its new site in Basildon, building a state of the art facility to ensure the highest standards of quality are maintained across its two roasteries. 

The UK is the hub of Costa’s national and international business. Unprocessed coffee beans from Rainforest Alliance1 certified growers are shipped from Colombia, Costa Rica, Peru, Guatemala and Vietnam to Tilbury Docks in Essex, before being transported to Costa’s Lambeth roastery. Costa’s new roastery in Basildon, 14 miles from Tilbury Docks, will be strategically important – enhancing operational efficiency as well as roasting capacity.

Christopher Rogers, Managing Director for Costa, said:

“Costa is growing and to meet strong customer demand we need to increase our coffee roasting capacity. Our existing Lambeth site does not have the long-term roasting capacity to cater for our increasing UK and international demand. The solution is to build a second roastery in the London area, which will continue to produce the high quality coffee our customers love in the quantity the business requires.”

The new roastery will produce the same Mocha Italia blend created by the Costa Brothers at the Lambeth roastery since 1971.  Costa’s current roastery capacity is 11,000 tonnes but the new roastery alone will have the ability to produce 45,000 tonnes – helping to supply the 464 million cups of coffee Costa customers consumed last year.

Gennaro Pelliccia, Master of Coffee at Costa, said:

“My job is to oversee the roasting process, and, most importantly, ensure Costa’s Mocha Italia and Old Paradise Street blends retain the same great taste as the Costa brothers’ coffee, first produced in 1971. The quality of our beans gives our coffee the unique flavour – setting us apart from the competition and making us the UK’s favourite coffee shop. We are immensely proud of our coffee and our heritage which is why we have worked so hard to ensure our new roastery will continue to meet our high standards.

We are investing an estimated £36 million in a state of the art new roastery to increase our capacity for future customer demand and to maintain the important traditions that have built Costa to be the success it is today.”

Costa is projected to grow significantly over the next five years, increasing demand for its coffee. For its full-year results, Costa announced a 17.9% lift in sales and a new growth target – boosting Costa system sales from £1.4bn in 2014/15 to £2.5bn in 2020.

Gennaro Pelliccia continued: “We treat our coffee with care and attention – slow roasting our beans to lock in Costa’s unique aroma and the coffee’s oils, which are only released when the Barista grinds the beans.

At our roastery, roasting is only the first part of the process – after that we must make sure the coffee is perfectly prepared. This is where our rigorous testing comes in – checking everything from the beans’ moisture content to their size and my favourite part – the cupping. Cupping is where we taste the coffee (the reason why I had my tongue insured for £10 million), it has to be just right to be approved and distributed to our stores across the UK and around the world.

When our new roastery opens in 2017, we will have a cutting-edge roastery supplying the best quality, from bean to cup, right here in the UK.”

At the end of June Basildon District Council’s Planning Committee unanimously resolved to grant planning permission. The site for the new roastery is on Christopher Martin Road in Basildon and is a former Visteon automotive plant. The brand new and purpose-designed roastery is being developed for Costa by Prologis, global leader in industrial real estate.

The new roastery is scheduled to open in early 2017.


Media contacts

Ben Copithorne or Ella Paterson at Camargue on 020 7636 7366 / bcopithorne@camarguepr.com / epaterson@camarguepr.com


Notes to Editors

1 Rainforest Alliance: Costa is the only coffee chain in the UK that only uses sustainably grown beans sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. Find out more at http://www.costa.co.uk/responsibility/rainforest-alliance/

The design brief for the new roastery was to focus on quality and sustainability, ensuring that Costa’s high quality coffee standards were met but with the minimal environmental footprint, as Whitbread, Costa’s parent company, is targeting to reduce emissions by 15% from its 2014/15 baseline by 2020.

Costa is therefore investing in ensuring its new roastery meets the highest environmental standards, designing the facility to be ‘zero energy’* and is targeted to achieve BREEAM ‘outstanding’ accreditation**, making it one of the top 10 industrial facilities in Europe for sustainability. 

Contributing to its energy and water efficiency will be solar photovoltaic roof panels generating approximately 250 kW and a rainwater harvesting system for recycling and re-using water.  The building and the internal roasting equipment will also have a wide array of other sustainability features, drawing on lessons learned from Costa’s innovative Eco Pod coffee shop and wider environmental innovation across Whitbread and its Premier Inn business.

* The ‘zero energy’ rating is for the building fabric only – the building will consume less energy than it creates through solar PV (ie for heating, cooling and lighting).  Internal equipment and plant are accredited separately.

** BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology) is the world’s leading design and assessment method for sustainable buildings.   Find out more at http://www.breeam.org/


About Costa

Costa is the UK’s favourite coffee shop, having been awarded “Best Branded Coffee Shop Chain in the UK and Ireland" by Allegra Strategies for five years running (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 & November 2014).

Winner of “Best Branded Coffee Chain in Europe” Allegra Strategies 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014.

With over 1,900 coffee shops in the UK and more than 1,100 overseas, Costa is the fastest growing coffee shop business in the UK and the second largest coffee shop operator in the world.  Founded in London by Italian brothers Sergio and Bruno Costa in 1971, Costa has become the UK’s favourite coffee shop chain and diversified into both the at-home and gourmet self-serve markets.

Costa employs over 12,000 people and is creating around 1,500 jobs this year and over 4,500 jobs in the next three years in the UK. We continue to be part of the Sunday Times Best Companies To Work For list.

Costa is committed to looking after coffee-growers. That's why we've established The Costa Foundation, a registered charity. The Costa Foundation's aims are to relieve poverty, advance education and the health and environment of coffee-growing communities around the world. So far, The Costa Foundation has funded the building of 46 schools and improved the social and economic welfare of coffee-growing communities.

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