My name is Rob and for those of you unaware, I’m one of the co-founders of RAVE Coffee.
At the end of December I decided to share some of my 2022 reflections and we received such a great response that I thought I’d send a follow-up. We’ve got some exciting plans for 2023 but today I’ll just focus on a couple of the most important.
New Roastery and HQ
The news that I’m most excited to share is our impending move into a brand new Roastery & HQ for RAVE.
For those of you not familiar with our Cirencester setup, life started 12 years ago in a small unit on Love Lane industrial estate. About 5 years after moving in we were already outgrowing the space. The constraints that come with running a small business meant we continued to cram in more and more staff and equipment until we were bursting at the seams.
Covid changed everything. Implementing and maintaining social distancing was impossible in our existing space, so we quickly took on an additional unit a few doors down to keep coffee flowing. Fast-forward to today and two buildings have expanded to four! The daily operation of roasting, bagging, and despatching orders is like herding cats so a more permanent solution is needed.
For a couple of years we’ve been on the hunt for one building that we can call home. Bringing everyone together under one roof, increasing efficiencies and most importantly, meaning conversations between departments don’t also include a dash across the road in the rain!
In October of last year we had a breakthrough and found a building for sale which ticked most of our boxes. The downside was the state of the building. It was a wreck that hadn’t been inhabited for 15 years and is in a worse state than you can imagine. Somehow it rains harder on the inside than out and it had plants growing inside that I thought were extinct! But the positives far outweigh the negatives. It’s a very cool building and we get to rip it back to bare bones and start again, bespoke to us!
Building works are now well under way and so far we have a new roof, new glass facade and the inside space is really taking shape.
You’ll hear more about the new roastery in detail as it nears completion as well as an invite to come and see it in action!
Coffee Bag Packaging
A can of worms and a rabbit hole that I won’t go too far down now. We know we need to do better.
Our aim is to make it easier for customers to recycle and, if possible, be plastic-free. The holy grail for us is a bag that meets this criteria, but here’s the sticking point. It cannot effect the quality or shelf life of the coffee inside.
We have been trying for over a year now to find packaging that meets all of our needs. Countless hours have been spent running trials and cupping for flavour degradation at 4, 8, 12 and 16 weeks. The few that make it through the cupping trials then go on to postage trials to see if they will arrive with you in one piece. We did have one winner but were then told by the manufacturer that they had discontinued the material, so we are back at square one for now.
We are still on the case and I hope to resolve this soon. If you receive a bag in your order that looks out of place with a note asking for feedback then at least you know what we are up to!
We have lots more going on at RAVE and my aim is to keep sending monthly updates to keep you in the loop.
I hope you find them interesting? do let us know!