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  1. #21
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    Apr 2013
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    Hmm ok I will have to look into the regulations around here. Do you use propane or natural gas? Is this the only type of roaster you have used?

    On another note...do you suggest starting getting beans from a broker or a smaller middle man due to starting out with small orders as I build my business?

  2. #22
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    Mar 2012
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    We use natural gas.

    It is my first roaster.

    We only roast organic and mostly get our green beans from Royal Coffee and Cafe Imports, as they both keep a nice selection of organics on hand, for the most part. Keep in mind that shipping costs are partly determined by distance. Cafe Imports and Royal both have warehouses here in the upper midwest and we can get beans from those facilities to our shop for less money than if they ship from facilities on the coasts.

    Btw, it pretty much costs the same thing to ship one bag or a full pallet, so order accordingly.

    scott

  3. #23
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    Dec 2012
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    Michigan, US
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    I buy for my own use and I normally buy around 180kg or 300 kg and the shipping is same for 180kg or 300 kg...
    I like Propane for smaller roaster. When you have propane roasters, you can move the roaster to different location but when they are 5kg or bigger, natural gas.

  4. #24
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    Apr 2013
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    I live near VA Beach. Does anyone know of any brokers close to my area? I would love to be able to pick up my beans and avoid shipping. When you started your roasting business, did you order several bags of coffee upfront?

  5. #25
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    Mar 2012
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    There are warehouses on the east coast.

    We ordered eight bags and another three shortly after that hadn't arrived by the time we placed the first order.

  6. #26
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    Apr 2013
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    Did those go pretty fast? Did you already have clients by the time you ordered? I'm just unsure of the demand and I don't want to order too much in the beginning.

  7. #27
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    We didn't have any clients before we ordered the beans. However, once the beans arrived we roasted batches until I liked the results and then set appointments by phone, made up a price list and brought samples around to the targeted establishments.

    I wanted to have a nice variety of beans on hand for single origin offerings as well as blends before setting out to sell anything. You only get one chance to make a first impression.

    Keep in mind that we roast only organically certified beans and for that reason had immediate interest from all of the local health food stores/upscale markets.

    Green coffee beans have a reasonable shelf life. You should be OK if you make sure all of the beans you buy are from the current crop.

  8. #28
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    Mar 2012
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    I guess a question to ask yourself would be, "How committed are you to making this business venture a success?"

    Is it going to be a hobby?

    That's why I get a kick out of some folks talking about starting a coffee roasting business with a 2Kg machine. Its almost like they are hedging their bets against failure rather than planning on succeeding.

  9. #29
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    Apr 2013
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    I am very committed and I am determined to grow this business as much as I can. I have always known I wanted to own a business one day since I was very young, but just didn't know what I wanted to do. Until last year I had no clue what I would be passionate about. The first time I roasted I fell in love and have been researching and practicing ever since. My wife and I are coffee LOVERS and her dream has always been to own a coffee shop, so our dreams fit together perfectly. This is my first business venture and I am a anxious, excited and nervous. I am just trying to find out as much information as I can from seasoned roasters such as yourself, and others. I really appreciate everyone's help!

  10. #30
    Senior Member
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    Nov 2011
    Location
    Jacksonville, FL
    Posts
    120
    KB, we have RoyalNY here in Jax and they are solid. Long way to drive for a few bags, but they have a Honduran Cerra Azul our coffee club has been distributing, fresh in. It's a really mild coffee that would be great for starting out with. Maybe you should consider getting something small to roast samples on, like a used Behmor.

 

 
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