Top UK Veteran-Owned Coffee Companies

Who are the top UK veteran-owned coffee companies? As with most of our articles, by ‘veteran owned’ we are including currently serving or former members of the armed forces and emergency services. This list contains all the coffee-selling brands we could hunt down who fall into that bracket.

This list is not in any specific order of ratings. We have grouped some and listed them in order of Instagram followers just as a metric for making this article more readable. It doesn’t mean that because they have more followers, we think they are a better business or make better coffee. Some we haven’t even tried yet. It’s just a guide to their current market position at the time of writing.

Last note before we get stuck in, this list isn’t finished. It will hopefully keep growing and expanding. Giving everyone a one-stop shop to find new coffee brands they haven’t tried yet in the community so they can support them. To that end, if you know of, own, or even are starting up a coffee company not listed here, let us know and if it fits, we will get it added.

So… coffee.

Coffee beans in open palm hands

The Big Boys

Contact Coffee Co. – 52.7K Followers

It would be impossible to make a list like this without including the UK OG’s. Contact Coffee Co arguably started the first veteran-owned coffee company here in the UK. They call themselves ‘The Original British Military Coffee Company’. As far as we can tell, they were, and are still to date, the biggest! You have probably already heard all about them, but they are owned and operated by one former Royal Marine Commando and one still serving. They pride themselves on quality coffee to be brewed and enjoyed with minimal fuss in any environment.’ We have tried some of their blends and are fans of their coffee.

What they are known for:

One of their unique features, other than being the 1st, is a coffee geared towards high caffeine content. ‘Red on’ is marketed as almost like a pre-workout. They are also one of the few UK companies that offer a coffee club subscription service. Their ‘Battle Bags’ are like tea bags for coffee, which is a pretty unique alternative to instant coffee. They also have some pretty cool trucks and Land Rovers, as well as a few store locations.


Their ranges are wide and varied. All the classics, like hoodies, caps and t-shirts, as well as some more unique items like their mountain bike range or fitness gear. They also have some pretty decent coffee receptacles and stock coffee-making items like Aeropress and Jetboil. If you are eagle-eyed, you would have noticed they also have some customisable coffee options floating about, which puts your name on their coffee.


A 250g standard bag starts from £7.59, with some other blends costing more. 10 of their Battle Bags cost from £4.59. So as coffee goes, it’s not the cheapest. However, from personal experience, it is actually pretty good.


GTC approves. CCO started a trend and we like what and how they are doing business now. The branding and content are on point and pretty slick. We will continue to have the occasional wet from these lads.

Front Runners

Soldier On Coffee Co. – 14.1K Followers

Veteran-owned from Ulster in Northern Ireland by LCpl Phillps from the Irish Guards, who was injured in 2012 while serving in Afghanistan. They stand for ‘coffee that honours our fallen’ and their logo features the lone soldier silhouette, which is pretty sick. We have yet to try their coffee.

What they are known for:

First and only veteran-owned brand based in NI that we have heard of. Probably for obvious reasons.


They sell a t-shirt, some beanies and flags. So the usual stuff. A couple of mugs as well, but the thing that caught our eye is the ‘shell insulated flask’, which is an insulated flask shaped like an artillery round, priced at £15. It’s not really our style, but it does look pretty cool. They also sell Aeropress and a few accessories.


Coming in slightly cheaper than Contact Coffee Co. with a standard 250g starting from £7.


We like the uniqueness of their origins. They are mega new to us, so we will keep an eye on how they look on social media, but it’s on our list to give them a crack.

Danger Close Coffee – 13.5K Followers

Owned by a serving armed forces member, Danger Close Coffee pride themselves on supporting serving and veteran charities from all military branches and emergency services. They also roast, grind and package their own specially selected beans. ‘Don’t accept anything less’.

What they are known for:

These lads have been around for a bit now and are very present on socials. They love a meme but they also support charities, offer personalisation of flasks, and do a pretty cool raffle on their website. They also have some individual drip coffee bags, which is like a ‘Battle Bag’ from Contact Coffee but in a drip version that I have never seen before.


Danger Close Coffee has one of the most exciting merchandise catalogues of all the coffee firms, to be honest. It‘s worth a gander. They also have that shell flask like Soldier On, but they offer some personalisation options. Grenade coffee mugs, artillery shell bottle openers and some very unique Christmas decorations! Can’t really explain, just go look. It’s a bit of a mental-but-fun selection. They also have the expected flasks, mugs, hats, hoodies and t-shirts too.


A 250g standard pouch is £6.49, so best value so far. 10 of their individual drip bags will set you back £5.99.


This one is exciting, to be honest. The coffee is a reasonable price, and the merch options are different. They are also pretty funny on socials, so definitely going to try some. Especially those individual drip bags, as we would be interested to see if they work.

Triple 9 Coffee – 10.3K Followers

The first one on the list not from the military space, Triple Nine Coffee started in 2019, born out of the emergency blue light services. They started out to find an alternative to terrible instant coffee or expensive energy drinks, needed when on those long shifts. They rate their version of the coffee bags as a ‘caffeine hit, the quick, easy and natural way’.

What they are known for:

Pretty sure these guys are one of, if not the biggest, coffee company from the blue light service space, which is quite unique for this list. They also put a lot of weight behind their coffee bags as the big seller and it makes sense when they are aimed towards busy shift workers. This means they don’t just have one, but actually a range of coffee bags plus the usual beans.


They have the usual t-shirts as well as a huge selection of cups, flasks or mug-type variations so you can get a few for different occasions or pick the one that works for you. Shakers and all-day flasks are a nice touch too. They’ve got the colder months sorted, especially with their beanies. They also have a unique cold brew bag for £1.49 – I might have to give it a go. The travel French press and key ring options are good additions to their range too.


Standard 250g bag for £7.49 but it’s worth remembering these guys are all about the coffee bags, which start from £4.29 for 10. They also have bundle options and bigger quantities that could save you some money.


They have some cool branding. Their selection of coffee bags is awesome. Plus, pairing it with the massive amount of options for different flask and mug types makes sense. Especially great for on-shift or that quick coffee fix. We will be giving these lads a go!

Steaming coffee in glass mug surrounded by coffee beans

The Up and Comers

Down The Range Coffee – 9.9K Followers

Owned and operated by former British forces and current operational security professionals. DTRC brings incomparable coffee to the market with durable equipment that is tough enough to survive any situation.’ They are busy people, still working around the world, which shows on their social media stuff and is a nice personalised touch.

What they are known for:

They pride themselves on their three ‘incomparable’ coffee blends. We have tried a couple and they are very decent, to be honest. Offering gift boxes, think coffee-based hampers, is a unique option too. Their blog also has quite a few pieces on there, so lots of reading available while you are drinking their coffee. The big thing they do though is their coffee chocolate balls as they’re not something many of these companies do.


A couple of mugs, t-shirts, and a patch. Simple, but they say it themselves; their main focus is on the coffee. They also offer some gear like the Aeropress and a flask.


£6.99 for the standard 250g bag, which is very good value from our experience. Their coffee bags are £4.45 for 10.


We have tried these guys and bought a t-shirt, so we might be biased, but we do like the coffee. The price helps compared to some others on this list and it will be exciting to see them expand and grow.

Green Beret Coffee Co. – 3.9K Followers

Started in 2017 by a former Royal Marine Commando, it was one of the first to emerge and is named after the headwear worn by commando-trained members of the British armed forces. Their logo features the famous ‘Falklands Yomper’. They freshly roast coffee to order and say ‘we love coffee- but are not coffee snobs’.

What they are known for:

Coffee freshly roasted to order and huge support for fellow former marines. They use their site to showcase the work of other ‘allies’, such as podcasts, books and the like. It is awesome to see the Brotherhood very much alive and well. The big unique selling point for them, other than the freshly roasted, is their flavoured coffee! They use a top-secret method to infuse four different flavours into their beans, which you can then buy as either ground or whole beans.


A couple of mug designs, a few stickers and a flag. Standard, however, they have some pretty cool additions like a coffee beard butter for £8.50, a soap and a manifesto. They also stock a grinder and Aeropress plus have some clothing like t-shirts and a cool-looking Raglan-style top.


£8.25 for their 250g standard bag, however, the real game changer are the flavoured bags, which are £9.50. Not cheap, but considering they are freshly roasted to order as well as flavoured, they are on our list for sure! Come at me gingerbread coffee.


They’re owned by a former Royal Marine so… we are sold. Try them. Brotherhood and all that, but seriously they look cool and do some unique merch. I definitely want to try their flavoured beans too. Always much better than syrup. They are also pretty supportive of other veteran-owned projects, so they deserve some backing. Full disclosure, I have no idea who the owner is and have never spoken to them.

Tactical Coffee Company – 3.7K Followers

A company that has been roasting beans since 1958. Using traditional methods and equipment, their roaster is a veteran that employs other veterans. Winners of the Theo Paphitis Small Business Sunday Award (whatever that is, sounds good though). ‘Highly caffeinated coffee’.

What they are known for:

They have a rich history in roasting beans and are very pesty with their approval. Going on courses and learning their craft. They love a meme and also use their platform to highlight some good veteran stories or the passing of members of the armed forces, keeping their memory alive. They are also one of the only ones on this list to offer TEA! Yeah, you heard me. They have tea. One of the first we have seen to also offer hot chocolate, instant coffee, and a decaf option too.


A pretty decent selection of coffee-making options, some t-shirts, patches and stickers. Where they shine is the number of standard mug designs to pick from.


Standard 250g for £6.49, but the question you actually want to know is how much is the tea? From £4.99 for 50 tea bags… but, ewwwww.


We will give them a go, that’s for sure. The tea is a unique approach, but not one for us. Seems like they know their stuff and have lots of options though.

War Bird Coffee Co. – 3.1K Followers

Founded by Jon, who’s currently serving in the Royal Air Force, War Bird Coffee has unique origins. Jon and his friend Adam started this company as a way to pay homage and keep alive the memory of the vintage warplanes of history and those who flew them. Some of their range is named after those historic airframes. They also donate some of the proceeds to the aircraft operators to ensure they keep flying long into the future. ‘Preserving their legacy.’

What they are known for:

Most of their coffee is aircraft themed. Usually vintage warplane style over the newer fast jet types. Their donations to keep them flying are also pretty unique. They also sell a few books and some awesome pin-up style design items.


This one is individual and not to everyone’s taste. They know their target audience and their style comes through, usually on t-shirts or mug options. They all have pretty cool vintage warplane-style designs or the classic pin-up style, which is pretty cool and adds a change of pace to the usual skulls and guns (we still love both). The most unique merch for War Bird Coffee is the on-brand books they sell.


250g standard is £7.50, so not the cheapest, but they all have some pretty decent and different artwork. They also do tea… but who cares? We have already mentioned a tea option.


Although not 100% our style or vibe, it is cool. What they stand for is different and they have some slick designs. I will be giving them a try, even if it is just to check out the selection of artwork for their different blends.

Coffee cup, bullets and a compact rifle on a table

The Rookies

Bubble Head Barista – 2.5K Followers

Serving Royal Navy Diver owned. Bubble Head Barista roast coffee, do events, have wholesale options and even offer barista training.

Price: From £9.50 for the 250g standard size.

Buzz Drones – 1.5K Followers

Serving Solder, it’s a drone company that also sells coffee!

Price: From £8 for the 250g standard size.

Stay Violent Tactical Coffee – 1.3K Followers

Veteran-owned by Gavin Prescott.

Price: From £15 for 500g (smallest size).

Bean and Country – 900 Followers

Connected to C2R-FAST (10.5K Followers).

Price: From £11.50 for 340g (their smallest size), purchased through C2R-FAST.

Full Authority Coffee Co. – 700 Followers

Born from KMPUK Tactical (15K Followers), but with their own website.

Price: From £9.99 for 250g. Coffee bags from £4.50.

Ground Hammer Coffee by HR4K – 22.4 K Followers

Brand new ‘Ground Hammer Coffee’ from the well-established HR4K. A sub-brand within HR4K that also features a Graphic Novel.

Price: £10 for 340g.

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