Good Morning Coffee (Hayden)
The Maker: Seth Aderhold
When Seth Aderhold graduated from UAB in 2016, he was looking to start a business he felt could survive any economic downturn.
He focused on something he knew he couldn’t live without.
“Coffee has been around for so long, I thought it was recession-proof,” Aderhold said. “I thought I would give it a shot. I didn’t see coffee going anywhere.”
Aderhold had to learn all about coffee beans, find a provider, learn how to roast raw beans and other nuances particular to the process. There was also packaging, distribution and sales.
He admits he burned his share of beans that had to be thrown out. But now, he almost knows when the beans are ready before he even checks the color and aroma.
When it was time to put a name on his product, Aderhold used a thought he had when he greeted his own cup of joe one morning.
“I was drinking coffee one morning and I thought, ‘Good morning, coffee,’” he said. He was surprised to find the name wasn’t already taken.
Aderhold uses Columbian Supremo beans, which have a sweeter flavor than some other coffee beans. He roasts them and adds nitrogen to keep the coffee fresher longer.
Good Morning Coffee produces more than 100 flavors, some of them seasonal like Southern Pecan in the fall. Other than regular, the most popular flavors are Irish Cream, Jamaican Me Crazy, Hazelnut and Caramel.
One other thing that sets Aderhold apart from other coffee producers in the state is his ability to package his coffee in K-Cups. He invested in a machine early on when he saw how popular single-serve coffee makers were becoming.
“We have our own K-Cup line,” Aderhold said. “I know we’re the only coffee company in Alabama that has this machine.”
He estimates that 60 percent of his sales are K-Cups, churning out 75,000 per week. Those sales are to grocery stores, restaurants and hotels.
Good Morning Coffee is available in hundreds of grocery stores, Aderhold said. In Alabama, the coffee is at some Piggly Wiggly, Foodland, Rouse’s Market, Kroger locations and others. He also sells to stores in neighboring states.
Aderhold remembers seeing his product on a grocery shelf for the first time.
“It feels kind of weird at first when you see it,” he said. “But it’s great.”
Good Morning Coffee is a one-man operation. Aderhold handles sales during the day, roasts at night and makes deliveries in the wee hours of the morning.
“I wear many hats,” he said. “It’s definitely working 80- to 90-hour weeks all of the time. It’s hard work, but I enjoy it.”
His hands-on approach means he can control the quality of his product as it reaches customers.
“All of my coffee I deliver to these grocery stores, hotels and restaurants was roasted within 48 to 72 hours,” he said.
The product: Coffee in a variety of roasts, blends and flavors sold whole bean, ground and in K-Cups.
Take home: A package of original flavored K-Cups (prices vary).
In addition to the retail outlets, Good Morning Coffee sells products through its website.