An Edge of a Story

An Edge of a StoryThe Early Days

Nestled in amongst trees along a country lane, it’s a pleasant escape to Edgcumbes, the home of EDGE Tea & Coffee.

The story of the Edgcumbes Tea & Coffee begins in 1981. After a 20-year tenure in the Indian and African tea trades, Frank Edgcumbe-Rendle returned to England. After settling back into life in the UK, he was met with tea that was no match for the leaves he and his family had become accustomed to during their time abroad. One morning, Frank and his son Chris sat down at the kitchen table with some premium leaves and decided to blend their own loose leaf tea.

Before long, Edgcumbes gained quite the reputation for excellent quality and taste around West Sussex, supplying a multitude of wholesale hospitality businesses. Going from strength to strength, Chris and his wife Alice became integral to the day-to-day running of the business, and they expanded their passion for the ultimate cuppa to include coffee.

Chris utilised his contacts and expertise of the trade to break into the coffee market, Spending time in America learning to blend and roast recipes just outside of San Francisco.

Back then, the roasting technology you see from the likes of Giesen and Probat machines was much more basic. Chris learnt the traditional way, using the senses to create the recipes that are now multi-award-winning blends.

His methods are still used today in the quality assurance of the beans roasted in-house in their Dutch Barn in Sussex.

Growth & Storm Clouds

The family business has been growing steadily for over 4 decades, now employing more than 30 people and has expanded the site to include the EDGE Roastery, Café, Store, and Training Facility. It has weathered storms such as the financial crisis in 2007 and Covid-19 by coming back to the same mission repeatedly; to create tea & coffee that produces a ripple of positive impact across the community and the wider environment.

More recently, the industry has been severely impacted by inflationary pressures and significant challenges across all areas from supply chain to point of sale. However, the team at Edgcumbes count themselves lucky to have a business with a very loyal customer base who continue to support the business through thick and thin, a credit to their passion and the quality of the end products.

Providing locals the opportunity to purchase fresh and high quality teas and coffees direct from the ‘roaster’s door’ is a plus, and the brand works hard to provide opportunities for their loyal customers to save money.

Read a lot more about the Edgcumbes success story here.