We’re serving coffee from the Haru Cooperative in Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia from Amavida Coffee Roasters out of Santa Rosa Beach, Florida! Founded in 2004 by Dan and Sally Bailey, their purpose is to “create global impact, improving the lives of coffee producers.” We were able to hear from Program Manager, Jennifer Pawlik about Amavida and their recent honor of being named Roast Magazine’s Micro Roaster of the Year.
More than just coffee
On Amavida’s website announcing their recent title, Jennifer writes: “For us, coffee is not just something we drink, a product we roast, or a project we support. Coffee is a vital influence in the lives of the people and cultures we represent and serve.” She goes on in email to explain that in coffee, a rising tide lifts all ships:
“We are all interdependent. Through my time at Amavida I have seen how sourcing practices and commitment to relationships by a business can support entire peoples and cultures through trade, and witnessed these working relationships become deep friendships. Through our partnerships with nonprofits like On the Ground Global and the coffee producing communities they serve, something as simple as a gravity fed water system can give access to vital resources, lead to development of additional economy, and allow people to pursue education and their dreams. At the roaster and cafe level, things aren’t so different. The access to resources may be a little less dramatic seeming at home, however working with a local company, earning a living wage, having benefits like vacation, volunteer service time, and many others; creates opportunity for the people and families who are Amavida and within our broader community also.”
In the same way that we found Amavida through their recent award, designations like being Certified Organic and Fair Trade provide access and recognition for coffee producers. Jennifer explains this benefit in discussing another offering from the Muungano Cooperative in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.
“The producers at the Muungano Cooperative care for their environment and have been producing specialty organic coffee for years. In the DRC coffee is one of few exports that benefits the people, and getting the coffee to market is extremely difficult. On top of economic and cultural instability in this young democratic country, Congolese coffee has also not historically been “on the map” in the specialty coffee industry.
This recognition for Congolese coffee within our industry is slow-moving and long overdue. Certifications like Organic have the power to have a positive influence not only on the Muungano Cooperative but also for the producer families, surrounding communities, and (hopefully) the overall economy by helping communicate the values and practices of coffee producers in ways they cannot without its use, although some may be already in-line with Organic standards there is power in the symbol and the proof of practices.”
We’re excited to share Amavida’s coffee from the Haru Cooperative with you! Come try it as espresso or on the Chemex bar.