Long-time best friends and co-owners Andrew Ballard and Matt Marks were living on opposite ends of the country, both pursuing degrees. For years, the two fantasized about someday turning their mutual love for specialty coffee into a profession.
After graduating in 2009, they decided to take a real shot at achieving their dream of starting a specialty roasting company. With a virtually non-existent budget, Andrew’s brother came up with the idea of buying an old camper to roast in. A week later, they bought a 1980 Jayco camper for $1,000! Working around the clock, Matt and Andrew converted the 25-foot camper into a roastery on wheels – one that the Department of Health, Andrew’s wife, and his landlord all found satisfactory.
In June 2010, Forty Weight earned its first dollars at a farmers market in Syracuse, New York. And over the next year, Forty Weight slowly added a handful of wholesale accounts and upgraded their facility to a finished garage.
Today, the guys operate in a state-of-the-art facility in the outskirts of Ithaca. Their coffee is sold in upstate New York, New York City, and stretches from Boston all the way to the West Coast. Despite their success, Matt and Andrew insist on always looking for ways to improve. This shared philosophy helped spawn the Forty Weight creed: Forever Exploring, Forever Evolving.