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C-store Industry Has Lots Brewing on National Coffee Day

NATIONAL REPORT — Numerous convenience store chains helped their customers celebrate National Coffee Day on Monday via special offers and giveaways.

Pilot Flying J customers were able to get a coupon for a free cup of coffee or cappuccino on the travel center and truck stop chain's Facebook page. To redeem the coupon, customers showed the barcode on their smartphone or tablet to scan at checkout, or brought a printout of the coupon.

Five blends of coffee, eight flavors of cappuccino and a variety of hot beverage condiments, including sweeteners and flavored creamers, are available at Pilot Flying J locations. National Coffee Day overlapped with the company's current seasonal offering, Pumpkin Spice coffee and cappuccino, which was available to customers using the free coffee coupon.

Cumberland Farms, meanwhile, commemorated National Coffee Day by releasing the results of a recent survey that asked consumers what they would be willing to do or give up in order to get their daily coffee fix. Results included:

  • 56 percent of respondents would be willing to be late for work and risk being scolded by their boss in order to get their morning coffee.
  • 69 percent would rather give up alcoholic beverages for a week than give up coffee.
  • 51 percent would opt for serving on jury duty for a week over going without coffee for that week.  
  • 65 percent would prefer to drink iced coffee year-round if they had to choose between iced or hot, even though fall weather has arrived.

In recognition of how much customers love their coffee, Cumberland Farms is hosting Free Coffee Fridays throughout the month of October at its nearly 600 stores in the Northeast and Florida. Starting Oct. 3, customers can enjoy any-size signature Farmhouse Blend or Farmhouse Bold for free. They can also add extra espresso shots, milk, cream and eight coffee flavors, including fall favorite pumpkin, for no extra cost.

"After seeing the results of the survey and how much people love their coffee, Cumberland Farms has decided to bring back our Free Coffee Fridays promotion for the month of October," said Greg Lorance, dispensed beverage category manager and in-house coffee expert at Cumberland Farms. "We hope our loyal customers and new customers alike will stop by to enjoy our delicious Farmhouse Blend or Farmhouse Bold coffee in any size — on us."

Cumberland Farms will also conduct a random drawing to give away prize packages to customers who upload photos of their free coffee using #CumbiesCoffee and tagging @CumberlandFarms via Twitter and Instagram on Free Coffee Fridays.

Other National Coffee Day highlights in the c-store industry included:

  • Stripes Convenience Stores offered a Facebook coupon for a free 20-ounce Café de la Casa coffee at all its stores. Customers had to print out the coupon and present it at checkout.
  • QuickChek Corp. introduced its new Reserve Blend for 99 cents.
  • Rutter's Farm Stores gave away a free large coffee to Rutter's Rewards cardholders with the purchase of any breakfast sandwich.
  • Kangaroo Express offered 12-ounce coffees for a penny from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.
  • Flash Foods gave away a free small coffee to customers between 5 a.m. and 11 a.m.
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