Black owned coffee roasters are having a moment.
Coffee is an African fruit. It is an integral part of African culture and tradition. White traders stole and commodified it. That was centuries ago; but to this day White importers, roasters, and cafe owners primarily benefit and profit from its colonization. Black people all over the world – yes, even Africans growing and processing it – are largely excluded from the table.
In light of the recent murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and subsequent protests, White allies are educating themselves and supporting Black owned coffee roasters.
From America’s Heartland to its Deep South and the Bay Area to the East Coast, these eight Black owned coffee roasters reclaimed their heritage and made coffee Black again.
Support these small businesses by clicking on the links and purchasing their coffees and merchandise!
Beanfruit Coffee Company
From roasting at home as a hobby to owning and operating a multiple Good Food Award-winning roastery, Paul Bonds has been providing the metro Jackson, Mississippi area some of the best coffee in the South for the past several years.
Southeastern Roastery – founded by head roaster Candy Schibli and located in Baltimore, Maryland – is as committed to promoting cultural exchange, open dialogue, and creativity as they are to roasting high quality specialty coffee.
Vagrant Coffee was founded by two friends – Jared Cate and Josh Dew – with the goal of taking quality coffee everywhere through retail stores, catering, and e-commerce. This small batch craft coffee is roasted in Baltimore, Maryland and ships to your door.
Black and White Coffee Roasters
Lemuel Butler is one of the most decorated coffee professionals in the industry. He and fellow barista champion Kyle Ramage transitioned from brewing coffee to roasting it, and co-founded Black & White Coffee Roasters in North Carolina in 2017.
Red Bay Coffee Roasters
Red Bay Coffee Roasters was founded in 2014 in Oakland, California by Keba Konte. Konte is an artist and entrepreneur with roots in the Bay Area specialty coffee industry. Red Bay is dedicated to diversity and inclusion of those who have been left out of the specialty coffee industry.
BLK and Bold
Des Moines, Iowa-based BLK & BOLD was founded by Rod Johnson and Pernell Cezar. Distribution deals with Target, Whole Foods, and Amazon makes BLK & BOLD the first Black owned nationally-distributed coffee and tea brand.
Three Keys Coffee
Founded in 2019 by husband and wife duo Tio and Kenzel Fallen, Three Keys Coffee is a multi-sensory craft coffee roastery, playlist curating, blog writing brand based in Houston, Texas. Tio roasts single origin coffees and creates jazz-inspired blends on a hand-built Giesen W-6 roaster.
Atlanta, Georgia-based Portrait Coffee’s name comes from a desire to change the picture that comes to mind when folks think of specialty coffee. To remind the world that its most consumed beverage was first discovered in Africa by Africans. Portrait views coffee as “an ode to their ancestors,” and every cup they make helps remind us of that.
Andrew is a husband, father, dog lover, craft beverage enthusiast, content creator, and niche market Internet celebrity. Formerly of A Table in the Corner of the Cafe and The Pulitzer Project and contributor to Barista Magazine and Mental Floss, he’s been writing on the Internet for years.
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