LOUISVILLE, KY -- The john conti Coffee Co. will mark its 50th anniversary on March 31. Founder John Conti began the business as a one-man vending operation in 1962.
Working out of a garage with a single truck, Conti steadily expanded in full-line vending. The emerging coffee service business interested him, and he launched his OCS operation at about the same time as the industry was organizing the National Coffee Service Association. Conti played a leading role in NCSA and served as its chairman from 1976 to 1978.
Conti started roasting coffee for his own OCS operation. He also opened two coffee shops in area malls, winning accolades from an area newspaper for serving "the best coffee in town" -- which has become the company's motto.
As his roasting business grew, Conti began supplying hotel, restaurant and institutional clients. Today, john conti roasts more than 1.5 million pounds of coffee annually; roasting is done in small batches to insure consistent quality. It also is famous for "contea," a premium iced tea line.
The company serves customers in Kentucky, as well as Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia.