Sometime around early 2019, Jodine and her husband, Rob, were looking to shift away from their main line of work. After much deliberation, the communications expert and her journalist husband decided to venture into the coffee business. With oversight from their daughter Jen, a seasoned barista, in October 2019, On The Edge Coffee was founded. “We are a family-run, specialty coffee shop,” Jodine says. “We mainly operate out of the Edmonton Downtown Farmers Market.”
The need for sustainability in coffee production
From the very beginning, Jodine and her family aimed to reduce their carbon footprint around the production of coffee. “Coffee producers live in poverty and yet they are asked to go above and beyond to make coffee sustainable. That burden should fall on us: the high-income countries,” Jodine explains. “We should take more responsibility for the environmental sustainability of coffee. One of the ways we thought we could do that was to try and optimize the process of brewing coffee.”
When the time came to put together a coffee trailer, they were acutely aware of their power requirements. The need for portable, sustainable power led them to solar generators.
How On The Edge Coffee found Portable Electric
The first time Jodine heard about us was back in 2017. “I was helping some colleagues in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria,” she tells us as she tries to recollect the details. “They were without power for months and needed a generator.”
It’s ironic how almost a year before we would go on to help communities affected by Hurricane Florence and Michael, Jodine was looking at us as a possible solution to help her colleagues. “They were lined up for hours and hours hoping to get fuel for their generators,” Jodine continues. “That is why we started looking for other options. It was the first time I had ever heard of the concept of a solar generator.
Although Jodine didn’t end up using a VOLTstack unit to help her colleague – she found a smaller unit elsewhere. But clearly, the electric generator made an impression. Why else would she have reached out to us almost two years later when she and her family were looking for ways to power their coffee trailer?
“To be completely honest, we know nothing about electricity,” Jodine tells us. “We were looking for a simple plug and play solution and the VOLTstack was exactly that. So I called the company line who put me in touch with Portable Power Solutions in Calgary for leasing options. I sent the Calgary company an email but by then the whole world came to a standstill because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It wasn’t until just a few weeks ago that we could operate the trailer. That’s when I reconnected with the Calgary firm.”
Jodine got in touch with Mark from Portable Power Solutions. Considering there was no guidebook specifying coffee trailer requirements, Mark took matters into his own hands and began brewing coffee in his driveway to get a sense of Jodine’s power requirements. Once he was certain that the VOLTstack could help with Jodine’s needs, Mark delivered the 5k e-Generator himself. That’s the kind of customer support we provide here at Portable Electric and the kind of care we demand from our partners.
How VOLTstack powers On The Edge Coffee
“We use the VOLTstack to power several things in the trailer,” Jodine says. “It powers the lights, a pump in the trailer which runs the water and a little fan on the roof. It also powers the energy-efficient Technivorm Moccamaster CDT Grand coffee brewer and the La Marzocco Linea Mini espresso machine.”
How VOLTstack can change the food truck industry
The obvious benefit of the VOLTstack is that it allows food truck vendors to go about their business in a sustainable manner, but Jodine shared customer-related insight that all food truck vendors can relate with.
“We were at a food truck gathering recently where there were five to six food trucks in a circle,” Jodine says. “Their gas or diesel-generators were getting too noisy and to cover up the noise, they played loud music. Ultimately, the whole thing was an uncomfortable experience. The VOLTstack units are silent and bypass that problem. It’s a simple solution with a huge impact.”
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