Our approach to sourcing is a combination of creating long lasting relationships and maintaining a high bar by staying prolific.
Producers are at the centre of what we do – so we look to work with people and communities who are moving towards the same goals. Constant improvement, means better tasting coffee, leading to more money in producers’ pockets. The only way this can happen is through repeat business with them, year after year. On top of fair pay, our Source+ program below goes above for communities stuck in dire situations.
Seasonality comes right after the people. Staying on top of fresh crop coffees is always exciting, and important for long lasting deliciousness. Without fresh ingredients, you can only get so far, and the same goes for coffee. We can only be sure through traceability of all our coffees.
source plus program
Repeat relationships and more than fair prices are givens with all of our coffees, but our goal with this program is to contribute back extra to producers or groups who are stuck in extraordinary circumstances. Normally we do this with specific coffees and allocate a $/lb sold as a kickback.
Projects we’re committed to so far:
Mataquescuintla and the Escobal mine, Guatemala
There is still a large gap and disconnect between coffee consumers, roasters, importers, and of course, producers. We see the next step in pushing the specialty coffee industry forward is a deeper level in roaster and producer relationships.
You see it with food, and even wine – an overall awareness for being conscious in what you consume by voting with your dollars, supporting your local economy – but coffee still has a ways to go. The majority of coffee is still traded and purchased through the coffee C futures (something to google: the coffee ‘C’ for most is a price for coffee on the global scale, it is now outdated but still abused by buyers to get away with paying producers abysmally low prices for their livelihood). The end goal is to ultimately pay producers solely based on the quality of coffee, and not paying a premium in addition to the C.
It’s simple to find and roast coffee, there are plenty of coffee sellers and intermediaries who have laundry lists of coffee available. Roasters have very, very easy access, but they may lack the transparency in regards to dollars, and who’s getting their fair share. The people impacted the worst, especially with cheap coffees, are the ones on the ground: producers and the communities they’re apart of. Those $1 or $2 cups of coffee come at someone’s expense, undoubtedly.