The coffee company, founded by Paul Ralston in 2000, joins a small portfolio of specialty food brands owned by Stonewall Kitchen, including the Stonewall brand, Village Candle, Tillen Farms (pickled and jarred foods) and Napa Valley Naturals (oils and vinegars).
The Boston-based private equity firm Audax Private Equity purchased a controlling stake in Stonewall Kitchen in 2019, precipitating a wave of six acquisitions. Just a month ago, Stonewall acquired the spices and seasoning brand Urban Accents.
The financial terms of the VCC acquisition were not made public, although Stonewall Kitchen said in an announcement yesterday that the coffee company will remain at its headquarters in Middlebury, Vermont. Additionally, Stonewall announced plans to open a VCC brand cafe in downtown Middlebury in the fall.
“As a purpose-driven company, finding the right home for our brand and the friends I’ve made was of the utmost importance to me,” Ralston, who first began roasting on an antique Royal No. 4 slotted-drum roaster in 1979, said in a press announcement yesterday. “I am extremely happy that Stonewall Kitchen will be the new home of Vermont Coffee Company and will continue roasting with our entire team here in Middlebury.”
In 2018, VCC became the first roasting company in the United States known to use renewable biogas to power its roastery and headquarters, which occupies a 40,000-square-foot building with multiple Loring machines.