Bowing to economic pressure, The Corp has increased its bargain bin $1 price for 20-ounce soda by 25 cents.
Last year, the D.C. government instituted a six percent tax on all sodas, sports drinks and other non-alcoholic sweetened beverages. The Corp, a student-owned company that operates several coffee houses and convenience stores, announced at that time that it would absorb the price hike and keep the price of sodas at $1 in their stores.
“Something that often gets overlooked about the [dollar] coke is that it has been at [its price] for the better part of 10 years. In that time, the overall price of carbonated beverages in urban areas has increased by around 25 to 30 percent” said The Corp’s Chief Financial Officer Scott Munro (COL ’12).
Munro reports no noticeable drop in demand for the 20-ounce beverage despite the price increase, but some students were unsatisfied with the change in tone from last year.
“[The Corp] had that whole campaign last year, ‘We eat the tax, because we care,’ and then they changed it. You might as well buy it from a vending machine,” Kathleen MuCullough (SFS ’12) said.
Munro cited general inflation and the six percent tax on sodas as factors that ultimately became too expensive to keep the soda at its low price tag.
“When pricing our products we always, always, always keep the Georgetown community in mind. Sometimes we have a choice in the matter and sometimes we don’t,” Munro said.
According to Munro, 20-ounce sodas priced at a $1.25 are still a great deal compared to prices in the surrounding area. At the University Bookstore and Epicurean and Company, soda prices run at $1.49, while campus favorite Wisemiller’s Grocery and Deli charges $1.89.
Other items facing price increases are Frito-Lay chips, which will be increasing by 10 cents after the parent company’s mandate.
“[Raising some prices was] not a decision we made lightly, but I feel confident that it was the best decision not only for The Corp but for the community as well,” Munro said. “If we aren’t profitable for too long we can’t give back in the same way. … As we do better, the impact our company will have can only increase.”
Reza Handley-Namavar (MSB ’12) said the price hike hasn’t affected his buying habits.
“It’s not that big of a total increase,” he said.