About this project
People love our coffee and they’re drinking it faster than we can roast it. With your support we can get a new bigger braver roaster to get more coffee to our fans. We are one of a few growing business on our main street in our small town. By funding this project you will also be helping our community grow. A successful campaign means expanding our operations so we can employ additional staff, by adding 4 to 5 more people. This more than doubles our current staffing! It also will give us further flexibility in our charity coffee offerings, which benefits various organizations locally and nationally.
Keweenaw Coffee Works has maintained steady business growth over the last 3.5 years of operation. We also see demand in the specialty coffee industry steadily increasing over the next 3 to 5 years. We are near capacity and need to upgrade our manufacturing capabilities so that we can continue to grow our business, still provide exceptional customer service and bring more jobs and philanthropy to our community.
KCW’s mission is to join our customers on their coffee sensory experience by offering friendship and education. We also seek to meeting and exceeding what customers expect from the high end specialty coffee industry. Another part of our company philosophy is “to do well by doing good”. Community outreach and philanthropy are at the core of our business model. That is why we feel now is the right time to grow our business: so we can increase brand awareness in ways that really make a positive impact for our community.
We are Nate and Val, the founders of KCW. Our passion for food and hospitality excellence started over a decade ago, and goes back further than we have been together - but is also what brought us together! Our love for high quality coffee started when Nate began roasting coffee at home and sharing it with his friends and family.
After we got married in 2012, we decided it was time to move from Chicago back to my roots in the U.P. and launch our business.
Our coffee roastery opened in June 2013. We are focused on providing fresh, high-quality coffee that is sustainably produced. Our philosophy behind every cup of coffee is - small is beautiful. That’s why we work closely with our suppliers to support, small artisanal farms. We use bio-compostable packaging, look for certified beans when available and never cut corners. Our products are produced with lots of love and integrity, every time! We know if we don't love it, you probably won't either. So, when you drink our coffee, rest assured we've done our research and taken the time to inspect all aspects of our product to meet your expectations. Passion is our number one ingredient!
Keweenaw Coffee Works is ready to install a new roasting machine. Right now we are operating on a 6 lb roaster, roasting 15 to 18 lbs per hour. Our new machine will be able to roast 25 lb per batch, with an output of approximately 80 to 100 lbs per hours, greatly increasing our capacity and supply capabilities so we can bring delicious specialty coffee to more locations across the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and the Midwest. Basically a new machine means we can roast in 1 hour what we normally roast in one day!
Our initial funding goal is set at $25,000. This will help ensure our roaster is installed correctly by the roasting machine manufacturer, as well as support the funding we already have tucked away for build-out and inspections.
Additional funding beyond the $25,000 will help us make some much needed upgrades to our current manufacturing capabilities as well as give us the freedom to hire a few new crew members - that will add 4 to 5 more jobs to our community.
- Fully branded/upgraded packaging and professional label printer - $8,000
- Purchase of a delivery vehicle/trailer and hiring of a dedicated delivery person - $10,000
- Purchase additional equipment needed to run a successful roastery and tasting facility including a forklift and other tools used to move heavy pallets and 132 lb bags of coffee - $5,450
- Upgrade our capabilities to support the growing demand for our wholesale products by hiring a trainer and a few independent sales reps to support the growing demand of our products - $2,500
- Within 6 months of crowdfunding fulfillment, hire 2 to 3 full time roastery crew members for order fulfillment and logistics management. This includes additional training through various coffee related educational programs. - $3,000 to $5,000
- Meet government and Non-for-profit branding and labeling regulations so that we can properly label ethically sourced coffees - $2,000
- Upon successful funding of our crowdfunding campaign, we will immediately get to work on finalizing our manufacturing facility details and location
- Assuming initial inspections and plans are reviewed in a timely manner, we expect to begin construction by June 2017
- Construction/Installation/Final inspection of the roasting machine should take approximately 8 to 10 weeks
- As we near the end of the construction/installation phase, KCW will set a date for our private backer event
- Toward the end of the construction phase we will also being the process of the backer blend coffee selections so that we can meet our September 2017 deadline for coffee delivery.
- Date selection for private coffee sensory events, coffee roaster for the day and create your own coffee blend can be scheduled once we have completed inspection. We will email backers who select these rewards, once we have confirmation date of final inspections.
For more information about this project, check out our other videos on Vimeo or visit our website About Us page.
Thank you for backing our project!
Backers of our campaign will have the opportunity to choose from some amazing rewards, only available to those that fund our campaign. There are also options to add to your reward, in case you want an extra mug or t-shirt (look for those add-on details below).
Add-ons can only be add if you have selected the $55 level or more reward.
Would you like to grab an extra mug or t-shirt? Well there is a way you can do that. Click here for instructions and pricing on Add-ons!
- Add-ons can only be add if you have selected the $55 level or more reward.
- Select the "Back the Project" or "Manage Your Pledge" Button (if you've already pledged) on the top right.
- Increase the total by the $$$ of the add-on(s) you want - EXAMPLE: You have selected the $55 8x10 Print Reward but you want to add an extra 12 oz bag of coffee, which is valued at $20. Simply adjust your Pledge amount to $75.
- At the successful conclusion of the campaign you will be able to specify your add-on details in our backer survey.
- If you have more questions, click the above add-on image for more details.
Risks and challenges
Keweenaw Coffee Works has been in operation since 2013. We have experience in taking our product to market and working with government licensing agencies that will be responsible for approving construction and installation of our new roasting machine and production facility. As with any construction project, things always take longer than expected. That is why we have placed the fulfillment dates of our crowdfunding campaign at September and October of 2017. This should give us more than enough time to complete the work needed for phase 1, get the local and state governmental approvals so that our manufacturing facility can operate and pump out more of the delicious specialty coffee we are already producing, and fulfill our backer orders in a timely manner.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter