Greater Fergus Falls is proud to see how much our community and local business have grown over the last year. From business anniversaries and expansions to grand openings and redevelopment projects, we’ve had a lot to celebrate this year — and it’s not over yet!
Our team is excited to welcome another new business to the Fergus Falls region: Scooter’s Coffee. The soon-to-open coffee shop is part of a nationwide franchise of drive-thru coffee houses. Keep reading to learn more about Scooter’s Coffee!
A Rapidly Growing Coffee Chain
Founders Dan and Linda Eckles opened the first Scooter’s Coffee drive-thru in Bellevue, Nebraska in 1998. While the name has changed slightly since then, the drive-thru model and “Scooter’s” name aligns with the coffee house’s mission to help customers “scoot in and scoot out” quickly — a mission that’s clearly working.
Since opening its initial location, Scooter’s Coffee has become a nationally recognized drive-thru coffee house franchise. The company has made Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 list for the last three years, increasing its rank by leaps and bounds year over year. In 2019, the franchise secured the #460 spot before moving up to #225 in 2020. The most recent ranking shows Scooter’s Coffee in the #103 spot.
The coffee house franchise shows no signs of slowing down either. Scooter’s Coffee has been popping up all over the country and now has over 350 locations in 30 states. The first Minnesota location opened in Fairmont last December. Since then, the drive-thru coffee chain has added five other Minnesota stores to its roster, including the newest location in Fergus Falls, which is owned and operated by Merv Van Engen.
As for what you can expect to find when visiting Scooter’s Coffee in Fergus Falls, well, there’s a little something for everyone. The coffee house serves a variety of coffee shop favorites, including hot, iced, and blended coffee beverages, as well as smoothies, teas, pastries, and breakfast foods. In addition to the franchise’s signature Caramelicious drink, visitors can also find a range of holiday-themed and limited-time flavors.
There’s no shortage of great-tasting coffee drinks at Scooter’s Coffee, but what makes it truly special is the care in which every drink is delivered. Along with fast, friendly service, visitors get peace of mind knowing they’re supporting a business genuinely invested in the community it serves and the world beyond. Scooter’s Coffee has a desire to make both a better place, which is why the national chain has built its business around “relationship coffee.”
What is Relationship Coffee?
Coffee is one of the most traded commodities in the world, and that doesn’t appear likely to change any time soon. Experts believe the United States coffee market will continue to grow by 4.8% by 2025. However, increases in the specialty coffee market have made sourcing high-quality beans more challenging. This, combined with consumers’ increased interest in where their coffee comes from, has raised concerns over the ethical sourcing and even distribution of coffee profits.
As a result, many have chosen to utilize direct trade models in recent years to combat these issues, focusing their attention on building lasting relationships with coffee farmers. Enter relationship coffee.
The coffee trading model relies on building long-term, transparent partnerships between producers and roasters. The direct trade concept aims to improve the livelihood of coffee producers while delivering high-quality, ethically sourced coffee.
Unlike other coffee trading methods, relationship coffee is insulated against fluctuations in international commodities markets. In addition to receiving a fair price for their goods, honesty and transparency in the process give coffee farmers the knowledge they need to gain bargaining power.
Scooter’s Coffee uses this direct trade model to source its coffee beans. The beans are in the top 10% in terms of quality and are handpicked by farmers the company knows and trusts.
“In a world of competitive coffee trade, farmers often lose money on each crop sold,” the organization explains. “This puts their families and their farms at risk.”
By sourcing coffee beans directly from farmers and paying above market price, Scooter’s Coffee enables them to invest back into their farms, communities, and environment.
Creating Culture & Community
In addition to building relationships with coffee farmers, Scooter’s Coffee thrives on forming relationships in the communities each franchise location serves. The company’s core values of integrity, love, humility, and courage are cornerstones of its employee and franchisee training programs. No matter which location you visit, you can find each core value written on the walls.
Prioritizing “amazing people, amazing drinks, amazingly fast” allows Scooter’s Coffee to live up to its brand promise and provide every customer with an unforgettable experience. Although great coffee is part of that, the love and care that the baristas, team members, and franchise owners like Van Engen have for their customers and the community they serve truly elevates it.
So, it’s no surprise that community involvement is also important to the company’s culture. Franchise locations often hold local events and find ways to give back to those who live, work, and play in the community. Scooter’s Coffee also partners with non-profit organizations like Wounded Warriors Family Support and The Pink Agenda to raise funds through special promotions across all of its chains.
On behalf of the entire Greater Fergus Falls team, we’d like to extend our congratulations to Merv Van Engen on his Scooter’s Coffee franchise. With such a high value on community, we have no doubt Scooter’s Coffee will fit right in in Fergus Falls! Our team is looking forward to visiting the Fergus Falls location once it opens. To get more info on Scooter's Coffee and it's grand opening, follow along on Facebook.