When coffee was first introduced to Canada hundreds of years ago, it experienced a journey across the high seas to the Maritimes. The combination of being transported in wooden sailing ships and the fresh ocean air, had an impact on the original flavours of the beans creating a more mellow and smooth cup.
Capitalizing on this concept of “ocean fresh coffee”, Saltwinds Coffee Company opened its doors in New Brunswick in the early part of 2022. Their belief was coffee tasted better when it arrived on these ships, infused with clean Maritime air and their mission was to create a carbon neutral cup of coffee, while bringing to life this long lost “taste” nuance.
While capturing that nuanced flavour was important to the Saltwinds Coffee Company founders, so was finding an eco-friendlier approach to coffee roasting. Coffee is one of the most carbon-intensive beverages consumed in Canada. While environmental efforts in the coffee industry have been primarily focused at the farm level, there was an opportunity for Saltwinds Coffee Company founder Laura Richard, to explore the roasting process which is the most significant carbon contributor.
Saltwinds carbon-capture roasting technology is used in the exhaust flue of a roaster, capturing the CO2 that is emitted when coffee beans are roasted. This means they can create both a delicious tasting cup, through a more carbon-neutral process.
“I first met Laura Richard, Saltwinds co-founder, during her time at the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation (NBIF), and when she kicked off her coffee start-up, we re-connected,” says Tyson MacInnis, CFIN’s Atlantic Regional Innovation Director. “While she was getting rave reviews from consumers, I knew if she could further develop her innovative roasting technology, she could further grow her business potentially capitalizing on the 7,000 coffee shops across Canada.”
“We’re on a mission to bring Saltwinds’ carbon reduced coffee to even more consumers, we needed help to scale up our reduced emissions roasting technology and demonstrate I on large industrial machinery,” says Laura Richard, co-found and Chief Operations Officer, Saltwinds Coffee Company. “Having access to Tyson and the entire CFIN network allowed us to not only explore funding opportunities, but also connect with like minding organizations on the road to carbon reduction.”
They were also recipients of CFIN’s Innovation Booster and have initiated a project to explore how to scale their carbon capture system for optimized long-term operation in industrial roasters. The results of this project will accelerate the protection and scaled production of their carbon capture innovations, helping the company offer a reduced carbon coffee to even more customers across Canada and around the globe.