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  • DUKUNDE KAWA : Musasa, Rwanda

    DUKUNDE KAWA

    Antique bourbon Arabica varietals, prized for their rich sweetness and subtle expressions of soil, climate, and terroir are farmed at Dukunde Kawa. The farmers careful stewardship of their trees throughout the year yields heavy harvests of juicy red coffee cherries, which are the starting point for great coffee.

    Draped like a patchwork quilt over a steep winding ridge, the two thousand farms of the Dukunde Kawa Cooperative stretch over 10 kilometers of meandering hilltops and slopes. Each small farm is home to a family, and on their small plots, often an acre or less in size, the family produces beans, potatoes, plantains, and the economic lifeblood of their community, coffee. This community of farmers—collectively known as Musasa after the area’s main town—produces one of the most elegant coffees in the world.

    During the harvest, each of Dukunde Kawa’s 2,000 members brings freshly harvested ripe cherries to one of three washing stations. The cooperative staff sorts the whole cherries by hand to ensure that there are no poorly ripened or damaged fruit. The cherries are then depulped—their skin is stripped from the fruit—and then allowed to ferment for 12–18 hours depending on the day’s temperature. Following fermentation, the fruit’s flesh separates easily from the bean inside, and is removed as the beans are passed through a winding series of washing channels. The beans are then placed on elevated drying racks where they are turned by hand to ensure even drying, covered during the intense mid-day tropical sun to prevent them from losing moisture too quickly, and monitored until they reach a stable moisture content of 14%.

    The Coffee—Deep chocolate notes, juicy hints of orange, plum, and the sweetness of maple syrup.


    Farmer Facts


    Buying Coffee from DUKUNDE KAWA since 2005

    (We support Coffee Lands Foundation with an additional premium of $.01 for every pound of green coffee purchased)

    • Co-op: Dukunde Kawa Coop
    • Region: Gakenke
    • Altitude: 1,600 – 2,000 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Bourbon

    COFFEE FROM DUKUNDE KAWA

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Africa

    DUKUNDE KAWA : Musasa, Rwanda

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  • YCFCU : Yirgacheffe, Gedeb, Ethiopia

    YIRGACHEFFE

    Ethiopia is known as the birthplace of Arabica coffee. This incredible coffee is sourced from family-owned farms organized around the Worka Cooperative located in the southern district of Gedeb, Ethiopia. It encompasses the highest altitude of coffee cultivation area in the entire country of Ethiopia, resulting in a stunningly complex and dynamic flavor profile.

    The Yirgacheffe Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (YCFCU), is an umbrella organization established in 2002 to support a sustainable coffee supply from cooperatives in the Gedeo ethnic region of Ethiopia.

    There are twenty-six cooperatives affiliated with the YCFCU totaling nearly 45,000 members in the districts of Yirgacheffe, Gedeb, Wonango, Dilla Zuria, Bule, and Kochere. To grow a sustainable coffee community, the YCFCU has invested in school construction, electrification projects in remote areas, and road and bridge improvement projects.

    The 62,004 hectares of coffee farms produce an annual average 9,000 tons of Yirgacheffe, 3,000 tons of Sidamo washed coffee and 24,000 tons of sun-dried coffee. We are excited to continue working with YCFCU to bring you some beautiful Ethiopian Coffees!


    Farmer Facts


    Buying Coffee from YCGCU since 2012

    (We support Coffee Lands Foundation with an additional premium of $.01 for every pound of green coffee purchased)

    • Cooperative: Yirgacheffe Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (YCFCU)
    • Altitude: 1,600-2,300 meters
    • Processing: Sun-dried Natural
    • Region: Gadeo Zone, Ethiopia
    • Varietal: Indigenous heirloom varietals

    COFFEES FROM YIRGACHEFFE

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Delicate, deeply sweet. Baker’s chocolate, magnolia, peach, black peppercorn, sandalwood in aroma and cup. Gentle, rounded acidity; velvety mouthfeel.

    Naturally processed Ethiopian coffees are special in the world of "Single Origin" coffee flavors with rich, sweet and intense berry notes.

    YIRGACHEFFE NATURAL IS USED IN THESE BLENDS

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    YCFCU : Yirgacheffe, Gedeb, Ethiopia

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  • GARMINDO: Aceh, Sumatra, Indonesia

    GARMINDO

    Under the dense tropical forests of Sumatra’s northern Gayo Mountains, the Gayo Arabika Mahkota Indonesia (GARMINDO) produces one of Indonesia’s finest coffees, formerly named the ASKOGO cooperative.

    Our Sumatran coffee was grown by members of the family-owned farms organized around the Gayo Arabika Mahkota Indonesia cooperative (GARMINDO), located in the Takengon highlands of the Aceh province on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. This region of Indonesia is also referred to as the Gayo land because the coffee farmers are from the Gayonese ethnic group.

    GARMINDO currently has 760 members organized in 13 villages. They are all located in the regencies of Aceh Tengah and Bener Meriah. ASKOGO members grow their coffee from 1,000 to 1,500 meters above sea level.

    The GARMINDO co-op offers regular training activities to each of the farmers in their co-op, in order to improve the quality of their coffees, learn new harvest techniques, and implement more beneficial farming practices. This group was founded in 2008, and has continually improved their coffee in the subsequent years. We have been purchasing coffee from GARMINDO (formerly named ASKOGO) since 2015.


    Farmer Facts

    Buying Coffee from GARMINDO since 2019

    We support Coffee Lands Foundation with an additional $.01 premium for every pound of green coffee purchased

    • Co-op: Gayo Arabika Mahkota Indonesia- GARMINDO
    • Region: Aceh Tengah and Bener Meriah
    • Altitude: 1,000 – 1,500 meters
    • Processing: Wet Hulled
    • Varietal: Bourbon, Catimor, and Typica

    GARMINDO COFFEES

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    BLENDS

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    GARMINDO: Aceh, Sumatra, Indonesia

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  • MAHINA MELE: Kona, Hawaii

    MAHINA MELE

    Mahina Mele means “Moonsong Farm” in ‘Olelo Hawai‘i, the language of Hawai‘i. Home to Kollette and Jason Stith, and their three children, it is also one of the only producers of organic coffee on the island of Kona. Rich with sweet notes of macadamia nut, chocolate, and vanilla, this coffee is sure to remind you of the sweetness of life in the island of Hawai‘i.

    “We arrived on the Big Island In June 2005 eager to see the coffee farm we purchased, sight unseen. Our first visit to our new home was stunning. While we had an idea of what we might find, we were thrilled to see the lush overgrown coffee trees and a macadamia nut orchard.

    Our passion soon became cleaning the land. Using only organic practices, solar energy, and water catchment our farm soon became an oasis for birds, camelions, and all plant life. The coffee appreciated the attention and soon ripened with vibrant with red plump cherries. The rich volcanic soils of Hawaii and tropical climate allowed the coffee to thrive.”

    — Kollette and Jason Stith, Mahina Mele Farm

    Farmer Facts


    Buying Coffee from MAHINA MELE since 2006

    • Farm: Mahina Mele Farm, Stith family
    • Region: South Kona
    • Altitude: 520 meters
    • Processing: Washed and Sun Dried
    • Varietal: Kona Typica

    MAHINA MELE COFFEE

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Rich with sweet notes of macadamia nut, chocolate and vanilla, this coffee is sure to remind you of the sweetness of life on the island of Hawai'i.

    BLEND

    Simply elegant, with notes of tropical flowers and milk chocolate. A perennial favorite among light roast coffee drinkers.

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    MAHINA MELE: Kona, Hawaii

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  • GUAYA'B: Huehuetenango, Guatemala

    GUAYA'B

    Working as family units, the farmers of the Guaya’b Cooperative carefully handpick each day’s ripe fruit and attend to the processing of their coffee on their farms in small-batches. Rich volcanic soils, antique bourbon and typica varietals and dense shade come together in the farmers’ hands to produce small volumes of exceptional coffee. A classic example of their Huehuetenango appellation, the farmers’ coffee has a rich cherry sweetness, lush floral notes, and a deep wine-like body.

    Guaya'b Civil Association is an 617-member cooperative of smallholder farmers in the municipality of Jacaltenango, department of Huehuetenango, Guatemala. The farmers grow coffee under a dense forest canopy that doubles as the winter home for dozens of species of migratory birds as well as local flora and fauna. It wasn’t always this way. When coffee was introduced to this remote region 40 years ago, it was promoted as an alternative to subsistence agriculture, and farmers were taught to clear forests to make way for this new cash crop. Fortunately, these farmers are closely connected to the health of their land, and have re-established their once logged forests providing much needed shade and diverse ecosystems in which coffee thrives.

    Now, a new generation of farmers works to cultivate coffee and a variety of other cash and subsistence crops to increase incomes, and to protect the health of the land. Thanks to their partnership with our importer, Elan Organic Coffee, Guaya’b has perfected the art of picking, depulping and fermenting their coffee to produce deep, juicy, and full flavored coffee with a truly distinctive character. In fact, the farmers’ coffee is so unique that they periodically run into trouble with ANACAFE, Guatemala’s national coffee marketing wing, which tries to subdue Guaya’b’s flair and replace it with a more generic cup profile produced by less-inventive processing methods.

    Not content to merely develop members’ coffee production, Guaya’b has a pilot organic honey project, which also helps to increase coffee yields thanks to improved pollination.


    FARMER FACTS

    Buying Coffee from GUAYA'B since 2005

    • Co-op: Asosicacion Guaya’b Civil
    • Region: Huehuetenango
    • Altitude: 1,300 – 1,600 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Bourbon, Typica, Caturra

    GUAYA'B COFFEES

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    BLENDS

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    GUAYA'B: Huehuetenango, Guatemala

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  • BYRON CORRALES: Matagalpa, Nicaragua

    BYRON CORRALES

    Byron Corrales is a visionary farmer, campesino leader, and pioneer in the application of biodynamic farming practices to coffee production. Twice he’s won top honors for this magical coffee: Maracaturra, a special variety found only on his small family farm in Nicaragua. The coffee is a unique hybrid of the heirloom varietals Maragoype and Caturra (Bourbon). It was developed and is grown exclusively by Byron Corrales for Thanksgiving Coffee Company. It is a truly exceptional coffee that’s more akin to its cousins in the highlands of East Africa than its neighbors in Central America.

    Each coffee carries the subtle differences in taste imparted by soil, variety, and processing, but all exemplify the classic Nicaraguan character: juicy apricot aromatics, rich cashew nuttiness, and a deeply toned sweet cacao finish.

     

    “I was 7 years old when my grandfather taught me to plant my first coffee tree. I liked to look at sun coming through the trees, to share the lessons my grandfather taught me about the growth of plants, and watch the rain fall and surrounded by the scent of the earth. I listened to the song of the birds and rode my horse to school every morning. 42 years have passed in my life since then and I want to transmit our family’s art, our work of many years, discovering the flavors we’ve learned to bring forth from our mountains, expressed in this cup by way of respect for our environment and the songs we sing every day in our coffee farm.

    I talk every day with my plants, and they ask me who will consume each bean of our production and in this moment when you are tasting our coffee, I want to talk with you and tell you in silence that you are contributing to the conservation of our planet, that this cup has come from the Arenal Forest Reserve, that its flavor that you’re tasting on your palate is the expression of life and the life energy of all the living beings who live in our community. Now we are together in embraced by this moment celebrating with joy the responsibility of protecting the future of our generations.

    The cup of responsibility is a song of love.”

    — Byron Jose Corrales Martinez, 2008


    Farmer Facts

    Buying Coffee from Byron Corrales since 1999

    • Farm: Finca los Pinos, Corrales Martinez Family Farm
    • Region: Arenal Forest Reserve, Matagalpa
    • Altitude: 1,500 meters
    • Processing: Fully Washed and Sun-Dried Natural
    • Varietal: Maracaturra

    COFFEES FROM BYRON CORRALES

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    BLENDS

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    BYRON CORRALES: Matagalpa, Nicaragua

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  • SOLIDARIDAD: Aranjuez, Nicaragua

    SOLIDARIDAD

    Perched on the slopes surrounding the Arenal Forest Preserve, the eighty farming families of Cooperativa Solidaridad produce one of Nicaragua’s finest coffees while stewarding precious forest ecosystems.

    The Cooperative’s members grow coffee under a dense canopy of banana, guava, and tropical hardwood. Each farmer harvests juicy red cherries by hand and then carefully removes the sweet fruit using hand-turned depulping machines. The day’s harvest is fermented, then washed and dried before being brought to the Cooperative’s office in the town of Aranjuez.

    Each coffee carries the subtle differences in taste imparted by soil, variety, and processing, but all exemplify the classic Nicaraguan character: juicy apricot aromatics, rich cashew nuttiness, and a deeply toned sweet cacao finish.

    Thanksgiving Coffee Company is proud to have purchased Cooperativa Solidaridad’s coffee since the mid-1990s, when co-founder Paul Katzeff visited during one of his many visits to Nicaragua. The relationship that he established is our oldest ongoing partnership and has been the proving ground for many of our ideas. After dozens of visits through the years, we’ve learned more than we’ve taught; today our relationship continues to deepen with the trust and strength built by our shared history.


    FARMER FACTS


    Buying coffee from SOLIDARIDAD since 1999

    • Co-op: Cooperativa Solidaridad
    • Region: Aranjuez
    • Altitude: 1,450 – 1,650 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Caturra, Catuai, Bourbon

    COOPERTIVA SOLARIDAD COFFEE

    BLENDS

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    SOLIDARIDAD: Aranjuez, Nicaragua

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  • PRODECOOP : Esteli, Nicaragua

    PRODECOOP

    In the mountains of Northern Nicaragua, 38 base cooperatives composed of 2,700 small farmers grow and sell coffee together as the Promotora de Desarollo Cooperativa de las Segovias (PRODECOOP). The vast majority of the farmers are in the Esteli, Madriz and Nuevo Segovia regions. Of these farmers 30% are women-owned farms. On average they export 30,000 bags each year — about 50% of which are Certified Organic and most are working with the Caturra and Bourbon varieitals.  

    The cooperative has a commitment to the wellbeing of their members and provides services such as marketing, cooperative development including technical assistance, training, credit funds, improving coffee quality and social projects to promote food security and gender equality.

    Their vision is for “Work based in the family and for the family.” The quality of their products, service and environment plus social development is equal to the quality of life for their families. PRODECOOP’s motto is “Behind every cup of coffee, there is a family.”

    We’re proud to purchase coffee from this cooperative — their coffees are featured in some of our most popular blends!


    FARMER FACTS


    Buying Coffee from PRODOCOOP since 2001

    • Co-op: PRODECOOP
    • Region: Esteli, Madriz, Nuevo Segovia, Nicaragua
    • Altitude: 1,500 – 1,700 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Caturra, Bourbon, Catuai

    COFFEE FROM PRODOCOOP

    Blends

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    PRODECOOP : Esteli, Nicaragua

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  • OTHAYA : Nyeri, Kenya

    OTHAYA

    Situated on the highlands of Central Kenya is one of the largest fully farmer-owned, Fairtrade certified coffee society in Kenya, The Othaya Farmers Co-operative Society Limited (FCS). The OTHAYA society was registered in 1956 with 250 farmers and has since grown to over 15,000 members who generally farm half acre plots averaging 250 coffee trees. This is where our Kenya Peaberry comes from and is one of the award-winning roasts from our 2017 Roaster of the Year.

    Many aspects make OTHAYA extraordinary, especially their strong social unity. They have a holistic approach to their business management and a progressive view towards quality control throughout their supply chain. The society has a full spectrum of support for their farmers from nursery, farm store, workshops and factory managers are routinely trained on wet mill best practices. OTHAYA also has cupping facilities and society staff cup samples of every lot delivered during the harvest season.

    “Peaberries are sought after by coffee connoisseurs for two main reasons: the small size and rounded shape of the beans means they roll around in a smooth and fluid motion inside the coffee roaster for an even and consistent roast. The other major benefit of peaberry beans is that they have been carefully selected, which is essential for optimal quality, regardless of bean shape.” - Jacob Long, Roastmaster


    FARMER FACTS

    Buying Coffee from OTHAYA since 2015

    (We support Coffee Lands Foundation with an additional premium of $.01 for every pound of green coffee purchased)

     
    • Co-op: OTHAYA
    • Region: Nyeri, Kenya
    • Altitude: 1,400 – 1,800 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: SL28, SL32, Ruiru 11, Batian

    COFFEE FROM OTHAYA

    SINGLE ORIGIN
    Africa

    OTHAYA : Nyeri, Kenya

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  • SOPPEXCCA: Jinotega, Nicaragua

    SOPPEXCCA

    The Society of Small Producers for Coffee Exports (SOPPEXCCA) supports farming families in Nicaragua. Nestled in the mountains above the regional capital Jinotega, the farmers of SOPPEXCCA grow coffee under the protective shade of bananas, mangos, and mahogany, and alongside dense forests providing home to dozens of rare orchids and winter habitat for hundreds of migratory songbirds.

    The SOPPEXCCA coffee cooperative was founded in Nicaragua in 1997 with the intention of improving the lives of its members and communities in the Nicaraguan coffee industry. They represent 654 families and is recognized around the world as a leader in the movement to empower small-scale farmers, especially women and youth. During the harvest, coffee is carefully picked, then depulped and fermented overnight before it is washed, and sun-dried. Careful attention to the subtleties of processing and the farmer’s pride produce sweetly floral coffee, with a rich nutty depth and a distinctive sweetness reminiscent of dried apricots.

    In addition to the Fairtrade premium we pay for this coffee, we give to a special fund for the "Unpaid Work Of Women" for SOPPEXCCA.


    Farmer Facts

    Buying coffee from SOPPEXCCA since 2001

    • Co-op: SOPPEXCCA
    • Region: Jinotega
    • Altitude: 1,200 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Bourbon, Typica, Caturra

    SOPPEXCCA COFFEE

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    BLENDS

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    SOPPEXCCA: Jinotega, Nicaragua

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  • ASOCAFE : Caranavi, Bolivia

    ASOCAFE

    Perched atop fertile mountain ridges in the foothills east of the Andes, 300 farming families produce one of Bolivia’s sweetest coffees under the shade of lush jungle canopy. These farmers are members of ASOCAFE, a cooperative founded in 1990 in an effort to improve the quality of the area’s coffee and, consequently, price and income for farmers.

    Caranavi province is the heartland of Bolivia’s coffee production. Rivers that flow from glaciers 4,000 meters above carve deep valleys and create an ideal landscape for the cultivation of exquisite coffee. The farmers of ASOCAFE grow prized varietals on their small farms and transport their carefully hand-picked coffee to central processing stations, where, under the watchful eye of the cooperative’s staff, the ripe cherries are depulped, fermented, washed, and sun-dried.


    Farmer Facts

    • Co-op: ASOCAFE
    • Region: Caranavi
    • Altitude: 800-1,800 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Typica, Caturra, Catui

    It is a light roast with sweet, citrus, chocolate and ripe papaya flavors.

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    ASOCAFE : Caranavi, Bolivia

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  • CENFROCAFE : Cajamarca, Peru

                          CENFROCAFE

    High in the lush mountains of northern Peru, on the rugged eastern flank of the Andes, two thousand family farmers produce coffee under the dense shade of guavas, acacias, orange, and banana trees. These farmers are members of CENFROCAFE, an association of over 80 small cooperatives working together to produce one of the finest coffees in Peru, while stewarding the surrounding mountain ecosystem.

    The province of Cajamarca has long been the backbone of Peru’s economy due to its vast mineral wealth. Unfortunately, these days, modern mining techniques despoil the earth and surrounding rivers and forests. The cultivation of high quality organic coffee has become the key to Cajamarca’s economic and environmental sustainability, and the farmers of CENFROCAFE are leaders in this effort.

    The members of CENFROCAFE carefully pick ripe cherries, depulp, ferment, wash and dry their coffee on their small farms ranging in size from one to three acres. The result is a finely crafted coffee with hints of honey, papaya, and milk chocolate complimented by a soft citric acidity.

    Farmer Facts

    • Co-op: CENFROCAFE
    • Region: Cajamarca
    • Altitude: 1,700 – 2,000 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Caturra, Typica, Yellow Catui

    Try their coffee with hints of honey, papaya, and milk chocolate complimented by a soft citric acidity.

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    CENFROCAFE : Cajamarca, Peru

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  • ORO VERDE : San Martín, Peru

                          ORO VERDE

    Located in the lush mountains of Nor Oriente in the high Peruvian Amazon ORO VERDE Cooperative farms produce green coffee with organic certification and environmental responsibility for the world. With more than two-thirds of the cooperative's membership belonging to the Chanca Lamista indigenous group speaking their native language - Quechua.

    ORO VERDE was originaly founded in 1999 by 56 members based in the province of Lamas, in the San Martín region of the Andes. The cooperative now brings together more than 1,000 families of small-scale coffee growers to produce one of the finest coffees in Peru, while stewarding the surrounding mountain ecosystem.

    Leaders in cooperative organic agriculture, Oro Verde provides services to its partners with respect for gender, and with solidarity for multicultural ways of being. The coffee crops are managed under shade protecting the biodiversity of the tropics. Along with many other projects they are working to Reforest their habitat, and have managed to reforest 2.0 million native trees in their region so far.

    The members of ORO VERDE carefully pick ripe cherries, depulp, ferment, wash and dry their coffee on their small farms ranging in size from one to three acres. The result is a finely crafted coffee with hints of honey, papaya, and milk chocolate complimented by a soft citric acidity.

     


    FARMER FACTS

    • Co-op: Oro Verde
    • Region: San Martín, Peru
    • Altitude: 350 – 2,000 meters
    • Processing: Wet / Washed
    • Varietal: Bourbon, Caturra and Catimor

    COFFEES FROM ORO VERDE

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Try their coffee with hints of honey, papaya, and milk chocolate complimented by a soft citric acidity.

    BLENDS
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    ORO VERDE : San Martín, Peru

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  • SOPACDI : Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo

    SOPACDI

    SOPACDI (Solidarité Paysanne pour la Promotion des Actions Café et Développement Intégral) was created in 2002. This coffee co-op is located on Lake Kivu, straddling the border between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda. It is comprised of various ethnic groups, who all share one vision: to transform the socio-economic conditions of their families, community, and to foster inclusivity with transparency to produce exceptional coffee for their customers.

    SOPACDI process their coffee with a Rwandan style fermentation, with nothing added. The coffee goes through three distinct processes; a Dry fermentation – in a concrete tank for 24 hours, then a Wet fermentation – where the beans soak in a second tank for 12 hours with water, then a Final a wet fermentation – in a third tank for 12 more hours. Once these fermentation processes are complete, the coffee is fully washed and dried on raised African drying beds for 4-8 days, depending on the weather.

    SOPACDI now has over 12,100 Farmers with 3964 of them women. SOPACDI is the only cooperative in Kivu with 4 certifications. In 10 years time, the guidance of small farmers allowed SOPACDI to contribute to the improvement of the living conditions of its members, such as schooling, housing, the pacification of ethnic groups, the creation of youth jobs, the fight against smuggling on Lake Kivu, and the promotion of women and pygmy rights, and is a leader in promoting gender equality and helping revitalize the country's coffee economy. SOPACDI is the very first certified Fairtrade co-op in the DRC and is the 2014 Sustainability Award Recipient from the Specialty Coffee Association of America.


    FARMER FACTS

    • Co-op: SOPACDI
    • Region: Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo, Africa
    • Altitude: 1,460- 2,000 meters
    • Processing: Wet Processed
    • Varietal: Bourbon
    Blue flag with yellow star, red sash with yellow border from bottom left up to top right. The flag of the DECMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO

    COFFEE FROM SOPACDI

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Try this coffee with milk chocolate, balanced richness, and a lasting finish.

    Africa

    SOPACDI : Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo

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  • LAS LAJAS : Alajuela, Costa Rica

    LAS LAJAS

    The owners of Las Lajas, Oscar and Francisca Chacón, are third-generation coffee farmers known for their highly differentiated processes that produce spectacular coffees. Most notable are their wild and juicy naturals along with their complex and rich honey-processed coffees. The Las Lajas farm is nestled in the foothills of the Poas Volcano, located outside the town of Sabanilla in central Costa Rica.

    The name Las Lajas comes from the Spanish version of an Arabic word for the indigenous-crafted stone artifacts found on the farm when it was first planted. In total, 38 hectares of land are divided into several parcels, each of which grow various shade tree species and create unique micro-climates. In addition, different lots process coffee differently—some naturally, others either honey or washed. Las Lajas’s farming diversity allows the farm to create several distinct products with different characteristics all within a contained area. There is a rich tradition of coffee farming in the Chacón family: generations have owned and produced coffee on their land for more than 80 years.

    After the tragic loss of their father due to pesticide-caused illness in 1980, Oscar and Francisca made the conscious decision to do what their hearts told them was best for their family. The two began growing organically. This decision to grow organically was difficult at first because there were no premiums paid for organics at the time. The two risked financial stability. As pioneers, the Chacón family saw the value in building a healthier farm. Today, many farmers and cooperatives benefit from the risk Oscar and Francisca and other farmers took many years ago. Las Lajas was one of the first farms to produce organic coffee and remains one of the only certified-organic farms in Costa Rica.

     

    FARMER FACTS


    Buying Coffee from LAS LAJAS since 2020

    • Co-op: LAS LAJAS
    • Region: Alajuela, Costa Rica
    • Altitude: 1,300 meters
    • Processing: Honey Processed
    • Varietal: Bourbon

    COFFEE FROM LAS LAJAS

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Try this coffee for a Milk Chocolate, Full Body Experience.

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    LAS LAJAS : Alajuela, Costa Rica

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  • AGROBERLIN: Santa Marta, Columbia

    AGROBERLIN

    Finca Agroberlin is on Colombia’s highest snow peaked mountain Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, situated at the northern tip of Colombia, this area is considered one of South America’s richest in biodiversity and has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. Dario Delgado and his family have owned and operated a 136-acre estate called La Cabaña since 1998.

    All coffee from Agroberlin Farm is shade grown under Guamo, Pacaya, Carbonero trees and other native shade trees (rustic Polyculture). It is naturally fertilized with carefully prepared compost originating from coffee pulp and manure. This special coffee is fermented for a period of 14-18 hours, washed and dried at the farm's wet mill and patios. It is meticulously milled and graded to standards at the farm owned dry mill in Santa Marta.

    Migrating songbirds need a place to rest on their long journeys and shade-grown coffee is one way to ensure that their precious habitats are being preserved. The Finca Argoberlin bird friendly coffee estate in the Santa Marta region of Colombia protects 46 hectares of prime migratory bird habitat.

     

    FARMER FACTS

    Buying coffee from AGROBERLIN since 2015

    • Co-op: AGROBERLIN
    • Region: Santa Marta, Columbia
    • Altitude: 1,300-1,800 meters
    • Processing: Washed
    • Varietal: Typica, Caturra and Castillo

    COFFEE FROM AGROBERLIN

    SINGLE ORIGIN

    Try this coffee for a toasted, spicy and dark chocolate experience while supporting Songbirds.

    BLEND

    This is an excellent breakfast blend or complement to any chocolate dessert - a great way to start off your day.

    Agroberlin

    AGROBERLIN: Santa Marta, Columbia

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  • A Trip to Africa: Intro - I'm going to Africa

    Intro: I'm Going to Africa

    On January 12, I depart my comfortable home on the North Coast of California to visit coffee Farmers and Cooperatives in Rwanda and Uganda. I haven’t visited them on their home turf for almost a decade. Over the last several years Ben Corey Moran, our former Director of Coffee, deepened our relationships with Cooperative leaders and farmers in Africa. It is my intention that this visit will strengthen those ties.

    Map

    I’ll be traveling with Nicholas Hoskyns of Etico, an import/export company that has imported our Nicaraguan coffees for the past two years. In 2004 he accompanied me to Rwanda on a USAID consulting job to help The Cooperative Coffee Sector plan its “cupping lab” construction project for cooperatives. He has a vast knowledge of Cooperatives and their organizational structures.The trip’s focus will be on collaboration: How can our relationship improve quality of life for both coffee farmers and coffee roasters? I believe that quality of life and quality of coffee go hand in hand. There has to be opportunity for a better life in all parts of the coffee trading chain, from the farm to the cup. It is the farmers’ love of their trees that makes good coffee great. Back here in Ft. Bragg , California, it is our pride in what we create for the coffee lover that makes great coffee remain great.

    There are some sticky issues that need attention, which have made this trip necessary. Primarily, about crop financing, shipment dates, and creating a system of transparency that demystifies the transfer of money from Thanksgiving Coffee to the individual farmers.

    I want to have a first person experience in discovery and learning. And I want to share this 10 day adventure with you. I use the word “adventure” with a certain amount of respect for its broad application. I am not “going on an adventure,” but I know it will be an adventure. What I wish for is the most uneventful yet spiritual adventure. No ceremonial high points and no high fives or WOW’S! I’m hoping for a low key visit with a slow easy gait, and a smile on my face when I return home.
    To be continued…

    -Paul

     

    A Trip to Africa (series archive)

    Intro – I’m going to Africa

    Day 1 – Arriving in Uganda

    Day 2 – Dancing, Mango Trees & the Dry Mill

    Day 3 – On the Road

    Day 4 – Transparency, Trust & Relationships

    Day 5 - Coffee Quality & A New Mystery

    Day 6 – The Mystery Coffee’s Story

    Day 7 – All Things Revealed

    Day 8 - Making the New Transparency Work

    Day 9 - The Final Entry

     

    Africa

    A Trip to Africa: Intro - I'm going to Africa

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  • "Delicious Peace" Moves Forward

    Exciting news from Uganda this morning: after nearly 2 years of project development, The Peace Kawomera Cooperative is about to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the US Agency for International Development (the development wing of the State Department) for a $250,000 infrastructure development project.


    Just writing those words is a little surreal. It’s been a long time coming, three trips to Uganda, countless hours meeting, emailing, listening to each other on scratchy internet and cell phones. Most of all, it’s been a tireless effort led by JJ Keki and Muhammed Kakaire Hatibu, Peace Kawomera’s Chairman and Secretary Manager, respectively.


    The project will finance the construction of a world-class coffee processing and storage facility, which will avail the farmers with the best tools of the coffee trade. Now, for the first time in the history of coffee cultivation in Uganda, farmers will be able to bring out the full potential of their heirloom Bugisu Arabica varietals. The Cooperative will collect freshly picked, ripe cherries, and then control the process of depulping, fermenting, washing, and drying in a centralized facility. Based on the development of similar processing techniques in neighboring Kenya and Rwanda (where PKC recently visited our partner cooperative there to study the operation of a central washing station, read more), we expect the washing station to dramatically improve the quality of the farmers’ coffee. And we’re looking forward to paying more for each pound of coffee we buy.


    None of this would be possible if it were not for the support of our loyal customers, who not only lined up to build a market for this young cooperative’s coffee, but also enlisted the power of their coffee buying dollars, through our profit sharing partnership, and over the past 5 years, raised over $100,000 which bought the land and building materials that gave USAID the confidence they needed to invest further in this remarkable endeavor.


    Recently, we made some big changes in our project, and transitioned into a new phase of our partnership with the farmers. Instead of $1.00 per pound or package sold going back to Uganda, we dropped the rebate to $.25. At the same time, we increased the price to the farmers by $.20/lb. We hope to completely phase out the profit-sharing overtime, and replace it with ever increasing prices to the farmers. Please also note that we expect volumes to increase (because of clear price incentives and actual investment in increasing yields through better organic farming practices, pruning, and planting techniques). Instead of creating a continuing subsidy, we created a kind of front-loaded capital fund. This money sustained the rapid growth of a young cooperative, and got them to solid ground. Now they are up and running, and ready to grow.


    It’s almost too sweet to believe…but then it gets even better. Two days ago, arrival samples from our two incoming containers (75,000 lbs) arrived. I roasted them immediately, and cupped them yesterday. They are great. Sweeter than ever before, with more clarity and complexity, and a fuller expression of their unique character. All of this was made possible by better management of coffee buying, which the cooperative initiated themselves. And this was using their old machinery and processing methods…if the coffee is already improving this much, imagine how it will taste next year!


    Many thanks to Laura Wetzler and Kulanu.org for their tireless work and for forging the initial connection with the Uganda-based USAID office. As with everything we’ve been able to do in Uganda, none of this would be possible without your contribution.


    You+coffee you love+farmers who love their coffee+a roasting company who loves farmers+4 years of hard work=


    Good coffee getting better+Farmers working smarter not harder+Incomes increasing+An interfaith peace-making initiative moving forward.


    That’s an equation we’re really proud of. Not just a cup, but a just cup.




    africa

    "Delicious Peace" Moves Forward

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