Local coffee company looking for community support to expand

CALUMET– A local small business is growing so fast they’re already looking to expand and add jobs.

Keweenaw Coffee Works opened in 2013 and produces a whole line of coffee flavors.

However, they’ve grown so much that they’ve just about outgrown their manufacturing capabilities. They’ve been running a Kickstarter campaign to replace their current six pound coffee roaster.

Valarie Baciak of Keweenaw Coffee Works said, “Our new roaster, which we’re waiting to install, is a 25-pound roasting machine. So the difference is we’ll be going from roasting 18 pounds an hour to a 100 pounds an hour, so it’s quite a big jump up and we’ll be able to really increase our capacity quite a bit.”

The company roasts about 700-800 pounds of coffee in a week. With the new roaster they’ll be able to do that in a day.

That means they will be able to add up to 5 new full-time positions within the first year and a half.

They’ve already raised enough money for the roaster and they are now trying to reach some stretch goals to expand some of their other manufacturing capabilities, including their Community Coffee Program, which would allow them to donate more coffee to food banks across the Upper Peninsula.

Baciak said, “The more money we can raise, the more coffee we can get to people who deserve it.”

They have until April 23rd to reach their goal of $45,000 and they will donate a one-pound bag of coffee for each of their backers.