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Coffee Bar Increases Breakfast Participation and Milk Consumption

Lauren Bradley,   Union 9th Grade Center
Breakfast For Everyone — First Meal Matters
Success with Funds
Coffee Bar Increases Breakfast Participation and Milk Consumption
The new addition of the Coffee Bar at the Union Public Schools Ninth Grade Center in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma has been well received by students. Students have commented on the convenience and quick service. One student said, “I get it (coffee) everyday! It gives me energy for first hour!” Another student said, “It wakes me up and makes me happier, even if it’s just a little drink.” Child Nutrition coffee bar staff has said the sugar-free caramel flavor is a favorite, whether that be iced or hot coffee. The iced coffee has been favored over the hot coffee on most days. With one cup of low-fat milk served in each cup of coffee, this addition is helping more students consume a serving of dairy that they may not have otherwise had that day. In October, the first month of service, about 985 hot and cold coffees were sold to students. Daily breakfast meals increased by 30% from September to November after the coffee bar started. In order to keep sales up, the Coffee Bar has introduced promotions such as “2-Dollar Tuesday”. One week, we tried a promotion where the students could get a free coffee with the purchase of a breakfast. Breakfast participation during this week increased about 16%. The coffees taken by students increased by 104%. Our Coffee Bar and promotions have been great opportunities to draw in students that do not always choose to eat breakfast. 

What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?

After the first few months of coffee sales, sales started slightly decreasing. To overcome this, the Coffee Bar introduced promotional deals including "2-Dollar Tuesday" and "Free Coffee with the Purchase of a Breakfast". Both were well-accepted by students and breakfast participation actually increased when free coffees were offered. Our goal is to offer a promotional deal about once a month to continue to draw in students to the School Breakfast Program and the Coffee Bar.