Categories
Caffeine Caffeine Alternative Productivity Uncategorized

How The Increase In Coffee Prices May Be A Blessing In Disguise

Reduce The Cost to Your Well Being

Profit by going without…

The other day I went to meet a friend at the local branch of a world famous coffee chain and was surprised to see the cost of a cup of coffee. He told me that the price has been rising throughout the year and asked if I hadn’t noticed that things in general were up?

Truth be told I did notice. Last post I mention about having to change hosts and one of the reasons why was that I was trying to lock in the price of hosting by paying in advance because all price plans were increasing!

And it’s not only hosting and electrical goods. Everything seems to be going up pretty quickly! Anyway I did a little digging around to find out why the cost of coffee in particular is rising and found out some interesting facts about what is going on.

The Weather

Brazil is the worlds largest producer of coffee. Unfortunately they have experienced some weather challenges this year which will affect next year’s crop (as they are already harvesting 2021/22 crop).

Frost this year and drought last year have contributed to reducing the crop size of Arabica coffee. And if that wasn’t enough, locust swarms in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda have been destroying coffee and other crops, putting pressure on worldwide supply at a time when demand is increasing.

The result is that this years crop has fallen short of expectations and the knock on effect is that the industrial coffee buyers have been placing bulk orders early (trying to lock in todays prices), which has in turn pushed up the price for all coffee imports for this year and next.

With the coffee supply chain already under pressure and consumer demand remaining high, the recent severe weather that damaged Brazil’s crop could spell more trouble for coffee prices and food manufacturers that source large amounts of beans used to make the beverage.

As inflation fears ripple throughout the food industry, a number of CPGs are announcing price hikes to offset the increased costs in their supply chain. Many coffee-dependent companies are among those in the mix.

source: Surge in coffee prices to a multi-year high could impact major CPGs, Food Dive, July 29, 2021, Lauren Manning, Surge in coffee prices to a multi-year high could impact major CPGs | Food Dive

 

Supply Chains

The logistics of getting the coffee beans to the roasters and then to the end users is quite complex. There are many moving parts involving thousands of people worldwide.

So with the recent restrictions and bottlenecks that have built up throughout 2021 we are now experiencing supply chain disruptions that are hitting the coffee industry quite hard.

According to reports, a longstanding imbalance of shipping containers around the world is spiking transportation costs for coffee, which could end up spiking the cost of coffee for end consumers.

“It is a systemic issue. It is now more expensive than in the last five to 10 years to bring coffee to the consumer.”

source: Coffee prices soaring due to “systemic” coronavirus supply chain disruptions, Grocery.News, March 10, 2021, Ethan Huff, Coffee prices soaring due to “systemic” coronavirus supply chain disruptions

As with the coffee beans themselves, companies are trying to lock in prices now as it is uncertain if supplies can be guaranteed and supply routes will be open. The situation has lead to a reduction of US coffee stockpiles which may lead to supply not being able to meet demand.

For now, many merchants are trying to hold the line on price increases as they work to lure customers back to cafes and restaurants. There’s steady growth in coffee, though the out-of-home segment could take two to three years to return to pre-Covid levels, according to David Rennie, head of Nestle SA’s coffee brands.

source: The World Is Facing a Coffee Deficit in Supply Chain ‘Nightmare’ – Bloomberg, Bloomberg, 23 March, 2021, Marvin G Perez, Fabian Batista, Manisha Jha

Alternative Points of View

It looks like the price of coffee will continue rising for the next few years, which isn’t great if you enjoy coffee or are dependant on it! Unfortunate as it is, if you’ve been thinking about getting rid of your coffee dependancy, now might be as good a time as any to try.

A high percentage of people get their daily caffeine fix via coffee, and although caffeine doesn’t cause too much harm in moderation, many people over caffeinate themselves without realising it which could be negatively effecting their sleep at night and their productivity during the day.

By slowly reducing the amount of caffeine you consume each day you can start to feel the benefits of your body adjusting back to being more in line with its natural circadian rhythm; which can help you have a more refreshing and deeper sleep cycle which in turn will help you think more clearly throughout the day, and naturally boost you energy levels to where they should be.

The money that you save from buying coffee could be used elsewhere, or if you can’t go without coffee, be used to buy as much as you can for storage, just like the industrial users and companies are.

Review

The rising cost of coffee and caffeine doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon. As of this writing there are fears that the lock downs and restrictions will be put back in place which would eventually lead to shortages and delays in you being able to buy and consume coffee.

If you love coffee, buy in bulk like the companies do and keep it in storage. Alternatively, you can use this time as a chance to break your caffeine dependancy and profit from the savings that you will make.

Either way it’s up to you how you play this, so do what works best for you .

Afterword

“Every calamity is a spur and a valuable hint.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Categories
Focus Productivity Uncategorized

How To Recover When You Are Down

Pay Attention to the Signs You’re Given

Slow down, take it easy…

Hello all! It’s been six weeks since I got a chance to write a blog post. A lot has been happening over here @ V-CAF and we would like to apologise for not posting.

This post is going to be a little different but hopefully still useful and relevant to you. I’ll be telling you a bit more about why we’ve been away for so long and what to expect going forward.

I was going to write down a day by day journal to post to the blog to show the specific steps that we took to overcome the various difficulties, but because there was so much going on I decided to focus on one thing at a time and do things properly.

The underlying message of this post is to not fret when things don’t go the way you planned and to take your time and seek out the silver lining that may benefit you and others.

Hosting Problems

Our previous host had problems early on when we first signed up with them. They were hacked and all their clients data was held to ransom. As you could imagine we and their other clients were very worried about what this meant for our visitors, and some left straight away.

We discussed the issue with the hosts and decided to wait it out as we believed that they would take the necessary steps to make sure that our data was safe and that they would help us to better achieve V-CAF’s website goals.

Then in mid October our hosts services went down in Europe (where our server was located). There was no warning or email notification. Luckily, I was in the process of doing some site maintenance after paying for new services with our host and saw that there was a problem.

This time we went to the hosts community site to find out what was going on and what we found was terrible. Many European hosted sites were down and had no access to their data.

As we were only using our previous host for hosting our blog and website we took the decision to look for a new host and start the migration process. As we didn’t have the latest version of our changes locally, this process lasted an age.

Development Problems

Unfortunately for us our hosting problems would impact our app development process as we were mid cycle of developing new improvements to V-CAF on top of our previous improvement releases that we timed with Apple’s release of iOS 15 and watchOS 8.

As you may or may not know, we are a small team so resources had to be pulled from development to help with the hosting issues which was keeping us very busy, to say the least.

The new features that we were planning were taking longer than expected due to a bug we found in the development framework which lead to us having conversations with Apple to figure a way around them.

And because problems like to come in threes, we also had personal commitments and issues that also had an impact on how much time we could dedicate to development and fixing the hosting issue.

The New Way Ahead

Thankfully, we can now see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Data on the website is almost 100% restored. Our new hosts have been extremely helpful with getting us back up and running and things are not just back to normal, but better and faster.

Thanks hosting team 🤩

There are new changes coming for V-CAF Stay Awake Stay Alert. As I’m writing this we are waiting for Apple to approve the changes so the new version of the app will be out hopefully at some point this week!

If you’ve got this far into the post, thank you and we want to share the major change that we made to the app with you…

V-CAF is now free to download! When the new release is out, download the iOS version of the app, and then using Apple’s Watch App, download the watchOS version.

You get 3 free launches of the app on the watchOS version after which if you like it please click the upgrade button to do a one time Lifetime access In-App purchase. Click the upgrade button on the iOS version of V-CAF to upgrade both the iOS and watchOS versions and make sure that your Apple Watch is on and that V-CAF is running.

If you bought the app in a previous release, please click the Restore button under the Settings tab on the iOS version of the app, and again make sure that your Apple Watch is on and the watchOS version of V-CAF is running.

If you have any problems please contact us at:
info@v-caf.org

Review

As the picture in this blog post states “Slow Down” seemed to be the message that all these incidents were telling us.

Thankfully the rest of the V-CAF team also picked up on that theme and we slowed down, didn’t panic, and only did what needed to be done on the things that we could work on to get back and go past where we were before.

We hope that you take the opportunity to try out the new release of V-CAF Stay Awake Stay Alert and that you find it useful for your productivity needs.

Afterword

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Categories
Addiction Caffeine Addiction Energy Focus Productivity Uncategorized

A New Beginning

A New Way For A New Year

Don’t Give Up & Be Consistent

It’s been a while since the last article was published, so belated new year’s greetings to you and yours.

During the holiday season a lot of you may have had the time to reflect on the past year and think about how you would like this new year to pan out.

Giving up or reducing the amount of caffeine that you consume is a common goal, and by coincidence a key objective of this blog, so we’ll be looking into sustainable strategies that can help you succeed.

As an added benefit some of the tips that we suggest can be used for your other resolutions or objectives too!

Success - A New Beginning
Success – The result of planning, hard work and luck.

The Typical Approach

Maybe because of tradition, or the fact that so many people are also thinking similar thoughts at around the same time, it seems to be easier to have good intentions about changing an aspect of yourself and proclaiming it to your nearest and dearest.

The first few days or weeks go well, but after a while you start to lose motivation and can eventually stop trying all together!

Never mind, there’s always next year…

Why it Doesn’t Work

It’s not just at New Years that we can fail to keep up with our intentions to do better. Dieting for your summer holidays, starting a new workout routine, giving up or reducing caffeine, or any other big change takes time and a lot of willpower.

At the time when we decide to take on the challenge we tend to be full of willpower and excitement. This is due in part to us focussing on the end goal and seeing ourselves making it to the end, but neglecting to see the hard work it takes to reach that point.

For example, a few years ago when couple of friends of mine and I were training at a gym, someone suggested that we should run a marathon (which was only nine and a half months away, and I’m useless at running long distances).

I’m quite heavy and had never ran a marathon before so I said no straight away. The other two guys said that it would be fun and we can help motivate one another, and eventually got me to reluctantly agree. We even put a forfeit in place for anyone deciding not to follow through.

Unfortunately for my two friends they had to pull out (one had a bad toe and the other a bad back). Luckily for me, the guy that challenged us to do the run had a plan, which I stuck to for dear life.

What Does Work

After completing the marathon I had learnt some very valuable lessons about achieving difficult goals which I’ve applied to other areas of my life and got good results. Here’s a list of the ones that I use regularly.

  • Plan to fail
    Last year I wrote an article about how to plan to beat caffeine addiction – “How to Build a Plan Against Caffeine Addiction”. In it I list some of the strategies you can use to overcome an over-dependency , but the number one strategy is to plan your failures in advance.
    It means exactly what it says. Think of all the excuses and reasons for giving up in advance and plan ways to eliminate them. So if giving up caffeine is your goal, then think of ways to avoid being around coffee, like not having any in your home or not meeting friends in cafes.
  • Pace Yourself
    Take each day as it comes and concentrate on your goal for the day. Doing so helps to focus your energy and attention on the here and now which helps you to overcome any obstacles you may encounter.
  • Track Your Progress
    Keeping a journal about your experiences can help motivate you during the difficult times. Using a tracking app to log your progress also helps by showing you the number of days that you’ve been able to keep going, which you can share with your support group or mentor if you need someone to be accountable to.
  • Have a Mentor or Support Group
    During my marathon preparation having a mentor helped keep me on track and helped me with a plan to achieve my objective, even when my support group wasn’t there.

Choosing a mentor that fits your personality is key. A mentor that knows you well enough to help guide you through the tough times is worth their weight in gold. However, don’t get caught up in trying to find the perfect mentor, nothing beats self motivation. Any good mentor will tell you that.

Review

So, a few short simple points that really work can help you become a miracle worker. The real magic is in planing and being consistent.

  • Don’t rush in but plan
  • Pace yourself
  • Keep a log of your progress
  • If you can, get a mentor or join a support / interest group

Conclusion

Although the new year has already started and you may have broken some of those new year resolutions, don’t quit. If you fail, don’t worry, just jump back on the program.

Learn from your past mistakes, plan accordingly and move on confidently.