Schuil Coffee Acquires The Sparrows Coffee Wholesale Business

Schuil Coffee, the Grand Rapids, Michigan-based specialty coffee roaster and distributor has acquired The Sparrows Coffee wholesale business. This new partnership allows The Sparrows Coffee team to grow its business by dramatically increasing its roasting capacity and access to capital. It also provides Schuil with additional specialty coffee roasting talent and expanded coffee expertise in-house. The acquisition was finalized 19 November.

The Sparrows Coffee, Tea & Newsstand was opened in 2007 in Grand Rapids by Lori Slager Wenzel as a café dedicated to providing an excellent coffee experience in an inviting, inclusive environment. It began roasting its own specialty coffee for the café, as well as local wholesale clients, in 2016. Slager Wenzel will continue to own and operate The Sparrows Coffee, Tea & Newsstand café independently, and will join the Schuil Coffee team as general manager of The Sparrows Coffee wholesale business.

Also joining Schuil Coffee are Cody Gallagher, Sparrows’ head roaster, and Tim Novak, Sparrows’ head of product development and quality assurance. Gallagher has a diverse set of coffee experiences spanning years and Novak has been a fixture in the specialty coffee industry for nearly 20 years, including an eight-year stint roasting at Portland’s Stumptown Coffee Roasters.

“Schuil Coffee is committed to all of its customers, so we need driven and genuinely passionate experts who can deliver authentic coffee concepts that serve the diverse tastes of today’s consumers,” says Tim Volkema, CEO of Schuil. “Lori, Cody and Tim have spent extensive time in Grand Rapids’ specialty coffee culture. They complement our legacy roasting team with deep knowledge and a capacity for innovation, consistency and adaptability, which can help us thrive in this competitive marketplace.”

Schuil has established a formidable green coffee network in the most celebrated coffee-growing regions around the world. With access to this product sourcing, the Sparrows team can produce a lineup of specialty coffee releases that celebrate the best farm to cup experiences.

“Joining the Schuil team is a natural fit. So far Cody, Tim and I have fulfilled orders for our Sparrows accounts with a super small roaster, but with access to Schuil’s green coffee sourcing partnerships and roasting technology, we can dramatically expand our reach and access new markets,” says Slager Wenzel. “By sharing our best practices and complementary areas of expertise, I think we can accelerate sales growth for Schuil as well.”

Schuil Coffee is West Michigan’s first specialty coffee roaster, and for nearly 40 years it has sourced, roasted and brewed specialty coffees. Offering more than 100 types of coffee made from beans sourced from the most celebrated coffee-growing regions around the world, Schuil supplies coffee, tea and brewing equipment to retailers, restaurants, coffee shops, offices, churches, hospitals and individual consumers.

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