The votes are in and this year’s BDC Young Entrepreneur has been chosen. Zane Kelsall, founder of Two If By Sea Cafe in Dartmouth, N.S., stood out among the eight finalists for Anchored Coffee, an innovative project to launch the first roastery in Atlantic Canada that will buy all of its coffee direct from farmers at ethical prices.
Mr. Kelsall worked in other people’s cafés for a decade before he followed his desire to make the exceptional cup of coffee and launched Two If By Sea Cafe. Founding Anchored Coffee is an extension of his drive to deliver on that.
“Our obsession with quality has led us to wanting to control every step of the coffee process. We see it as the only way to expand around the world,” says Mr. Kelsall, about how the project came about.
However, the return on investment the project will bring is not lost on him. “Between our two cafés we’re going through 40,000 pounds of coffee a year. So just supplying our own cafés, we’ll see a complete return in approximately 19 months,” Mr. Kelsall says. And that doesn’t include offshoots like being able to sell to other cafés.
Another benefit of Anchored Coffee is having consistency of brand, a key component of growth in the food industry.