Like most cafes, Broadsheet Coffee Roasters near Harvard Yard in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has been hard hit by Covid-19. But the roastery in the back of the shop is booming, churning out close to 2,000 pounds (907 kilograms) of high-end beans a week — about twice as many as before the pandemic.
The lifeline came in May, when Broadsheet started using Trade, a premium-coffee subscription business, to sell bags of beans through the mail.
“When we added Trade into the mix, that totally stabilized the business,” said founder Aaron MacDougall, who was a banker at Deutsche Bank AG before switching to coffee. He’s been able to hire back three of the nine workers he laid off in mid-March — even as sales to coffee shops and offices remain slow.