Kids start coffee bus & profits are brewing

5:32 PM, Jul 23, 2008   |    comments
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Lakeland, Florida - A group of Polk County kids took a simple idea, used a basic marketing strategy, picked a favorite commodity and is turning profit. The home-based business called FatBrain Coffee is teaching kids ages 8 to 15 the value of a dollar.

Scout Hunt, a 9-year-old home-schooled student, practices her sales presentation with other students at her Lakeland home.

"I started a home-schooled business. The purpose is to teach me marketing, accounting and social responsibility," says Scout.

Scout's mom Nicole explains how the idea was born, "There was a group of us moms who wanted to teach our children basic life skills. We each picked an aspect of life we had experience in. I had experience in marketing and running my own business."

Nicole wrote the children's business curriculum, consisting of seven easy lessons. Kids learn how to budget and they even name their own coffee.

The Hunts named their product FatBrain Coffee. What makes it special?

"That it's fresher. It's delivered to the person within seven days of being roasted," says Scout.

The coffee is bought at cost from a roaster in Georgia. The kids sell it for $11 a pound. Scout sells about 15 bags each month.

The profits are well spent. Scout says some money goes to an orphanage in Zimbabwe, some for gymnastics class, some to ties at church and some for savings.

"It's hard to follow up with your customers and fill out income statements, but its fun because you make money," says Scout.

Besides learning how to run a business, kids learn the value of a dollar. "We learned money doesn't grow on trees," says 10-year-old Katherine Patrick.

The coffee sales business has been so popular Nicole Hunt sells the FatBrain Coffee curriculum she wrote to help other families teach the real life lessons.

The program sells for $20.

Isabel Mascareñas, Tampa Bay's 10 News

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