"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." -Eleanor Roosevelt
Buzz words, like Fair Trade and Organic, are just a few examples of words most recently being used to promote and help consumers understand a business' practice from crop to cup. Whether it is coffee or any other product found at a Whole Foods, Earth Fare, or Fresh Market, these labels are used as a way to build trust between the business and consumer.
Whether it was because of our passion to adopt a different model or fear of fees and never ending paperwork to become Fair Trade, we decided to take a path most recently being taken by specialty coffee companies in America: the Direct Trade path.
We've chosen to focus on Direct Trade above all else for these reasons:
- Significant focus on direct communication between us and our farmers in Thailand. We talk almost daily with our partners in Thailand discussing progress in America, future plans, and how we can continuously improve in quality.
- Individual farms cannot become Fair Trade certified. For our first batch of coffee, we worked directly with only 10 families living in a small village on Doi Chang (Elephant Mountain) who are all part of the Akha Hill Tribe.
- In-person visits to the farm strengthen bonds between ourselves and farmers. We love getting to know our farmers, harvesting coffee alongside them, and looking for ways to improve the process.
- Increased quality incentive for farmers - All prices paid for coffee are significantly higher than "Fair Trade" price and are based on the quality of coffee produced.
- Focus on efficiency and decreasing middlemen within the supply chain from crop to cup.
All of the reasons listed above foster growth and sustainability within the farming community in Thailand and coffee community in America. Higher wages, increased quality, and sustainable supply chain result in the most responsibly produced, high quality cup of coffee. Despite higher costs and increased time spent focusing on quality, we are proud to call ourselves Direct Trade and will continue to do so no matter the quantity of coffee imported into America.
We're itching to get back to the farm in the Fall/Winter and see the farmers, harvest coffee, and continuously look for ways to improve our process as we decrease our negative impact on the environment. If you, or anyone you know, have any questions about our practices, price payed for coffee, or our farmers, please reach out to us directly, and we would love to get in touch.