Inside the family-run Sussex coffee roasters supplying the cafés, hotels and restaurants you visit

For almost 60 years, Kendrick’s has been roasting and selling coffee across Sussex and beyond.

The Ferring-based, family-run business supplies outlets across the UK with coffee, tea, hot chocolate and associated products, as well as the machinery needed to make the perfect hot drink.

Started in 1964 by the late Thalben ‘Roy’ Loydell, the business is now run by his son, Phil, and grandson, Rob, from its deceptively large roastery in Ocean Parade.

With a dedicated team of nine staff, many of whom have worked for the company for decades, Kendrick’s prides itself on its expert knowledge as the only coffee roastery in Worthing.

I was lucky enough to be shown around, and saw the process of getting coffee from bean to cup first-hand. I also saw how loose leaf tea and tea bags are produced, as well as learning about how Kendrick’s provides machinery servicing and free barista training to its customers locally.

Phil said: “It just makes good sense for us, as we know we supply the best product, but it can taste different depending on how people make it.

"We have a training room where we can take our customers and their staff to show them how to get the best out of our products, so their customers get the perfect coffee every time.”

Kendrick’s was started by Roy after he moved from London to Worthing. He had been working in the coffee market as a trader, but didn’t want to commute any more, so decided to use his expertise to set up his own firm.

He was based in the centre of Worthing for 10 years, before moving to Ferring to expand the business where it has now been based for almost 50 years.

Rob explained the production process to me. Having bought the raw beans from brokers in London, around 20 to 25 bags of coffee beans each weighing 60kg arrive at Kendrick’s each week.

They are roasted in one of two machines, one digital roaster, one drum roaster, depending on the type of bean. After cooling, they are then either packaged as whole beans, or ground and then packaged in either vacuum-sealed bags, or bags with an air valve.

And because everything is freshly roasted on site, products could be on the shelves or being served to customers the very same day they are roasted.

Rob said: “Everything is adjusted depending on the type of bean and where it’s from. Temperatures, the time it’s roasted for, etc, can all change.

"We can also make custom blends if our customer has a specific idea in mind of what they want to serve. They can come in and we’ll sit down with them and produce something to their specifications.”

The company’s most popular tea is its Sussex Blend, which has been specially created to give a flavour that ‘punches through’ the hard water we have in this area.

It can be bought as tea bags or loose leaf, along with a range of other teas. The firm also has its own hot chocolate blend, and sells sugars, syrups, milk portions, biscuits and more.

Locals can buy a cup of tea or coffee from the Kendrick’s shop at the front of the base, as well as a range of the company’s bags of tea and coffee.

And across Sussex, there are around 500 customers using the Kendrick’s brand, so it’s likely that residents will have had a cup in a café, shop, hotel, sports ground or elsewhere at some point.

With next year’s big anniversary coming up, Rob is looking to the future.

He said: “As a family-run business, going forward I want to continue my legacy and heritage. We’re the only coffee roasters in Worthing, and we know we do what we well, so I just want to keep that going.”

For more information on Kendrick’s, and to order products online, visit the website.

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