You Call It Coffee, They Call It Opportunity

A man pouring coffee into a grinder

This article was originally published in the Spring 2024 issue of Living Recovery. To view the full issue click here.

The coffee industry is worth a booming 343.2 billion dollars yearly. With a 52% increase in demand since 2015 it’s easy to see why. On nearly every street corner, you can find somewhere that will serve you a cup of your ‘morning Joe’ for your commute. Americans live off the boost.

At Masterpiece Cafe in a small Eastern Kentucky town called Louisa, their reason for serving a fresh cup of joe is to provide an opportunity to others. “The idea to roast our own coffee was something that was just bounced around,” said Brandon Parsons, Chief Operations Officer of ARC Enterprises Division.

That bouncing idea would soon land on a simple thought: “What if we taught people in recovery how to roast coffee and ship it to ARC residential centers across the region?” With the purchase of a coffee roaster, some training, and clients who were ready to learn a new skill, the roasting started and hasn’t stopped since.

“Coming in every day and seeing [the roaster] going, knowing where it is going and who it is serving is one of the greatest feelings,” said Parsons. “The clients that are roasting it are begging to come in at all hours so they can provide it to more people in our centers like where they were.”

Parsons was one of millions of Americans who would grab their morning coffee from anywhere that had it on the menu. Now he drinks what he calls “a cup of hope” each day. “The interns are learning a skill and trade that is not offered many places at all and one that can truly take them from their former crisis to a plausible career.”

Now called Masterpiece Coffee, the fresh beans can be purchased at Masterpiece Cafe in Louisa.