From our Founder, Gary Lambert
Bright Land Coffee Co.'s name emerged from the translation of my last name, Lambert, from the German word Landberht meaning "land" and "bright".
I started Bright Land Coffee in 2019, in Philadelphia where I lived for nearly 20 years. After four years of aggressive treatments for advanced Multiple Myeloma, a blood cancer, I had to not only face my mortality, but also the end of my career in law enforcement.
A longtime coffee lover and home roaster, I came to my wife with an insane idea -- my own cold brew coffee company. To my surprise, she gave her full support. I spent a year or so in intense R&D before renting a commercial kitchen to roast, brew and bottle. I started out at local farmers' markets with bottles of regular and CBD-infused cold brew and after a few months, added whole and ground coffee.
In retrospect, it probably wasn't that insane of an idea. I'd spent my early years between my grandfather's farm and my father's factory and distribution companies in Jamaica. I was also a born tinkerer, re-engineering all sorts of gadgets and devices, and later getting a degree in Physics and math. Combining the science of roasting and brewing, with the knowledge of terroir, growing seasons, and entrepreneurship didn't scare me. What put a lump in my throat was the in-person selling! Ironically, I got sales training from my kids, both former Scouts adept at hawking cookies and popcorn. Their ease at rapport building made me step my game up quickly! :)
While Bright Land Coffee was progressing, with accounts at local cafes, bakeries, and specialty grocers, my health wasn't as great. The emergence of COVID-19 sealed the deal. As a family, we decided to relocate to the Tampa Bay area, closer to our families, more amenable weather, and near to a world-renowned cancer center.
Being in Florida has been a welcome change, professionally and personally. We welcomed a partner, Peter Prince in early 2021 who also acts as our CFO and in the summer of 2022, added Michael Ellis to lead sales efforts. Our beverage line expanded to include a Delta-8 infused cold brew, nitro-infused cold-brew kegs for bars, offices, and cafes, and in the fall of 2022, our first Kava-infused green tea beverage.
We are excited to see what's next and welcome you to contact us to learn more about our business, our products, and beverage solutions for your organization.
What does being Black-Owned Mean?
Being black in the coffee industry is a rarified position. Both Peter and I feel the weight of that responsibility; as a black-owned business and also as buyers of green coffee from primarily black and brown countries.
To us, "Black-Owned" doesn't just mean that someone black has legal responsibility within the company. It means that we remain connected to the communities of color where our coffee is grown and to communities of color in America where we can make a difference.
Coffee growers and processors are supported through partnerships with reputable green coffee suppliers who share our commitment to ethical labor practices. We firmly believe that our coffee tastes better without the taint of oppression.
As we grow, we aim to support our local communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. Most recently, we have sponsored racers in the Bike MS: The Citrus Tour and Walk MS events for Multiple Sclerosis. In particular, I am invested in supporting the cancer community that has supported me throughout my battle with Multiple Myeloma.