There is a never-ending debate raging deep within the Specialty Coffee world that is battling over the very foundation of what Specialty Coffee is and it’s place in our world. It is deeply embedded. So deep in fact that few people talk about it on any kind of regular basis. It is a foundational core belief and action structure that builds the warp and weave of the fabric of Specialty Coffee. On one hand there is the glorious dream of slapping a rustic rucksack over your shoulder, hopping on a rickety bush plane and swooping Indianan Jones style into a remote coffee jungle on the side of a volcano. The intrepid explorer arrives with grit and glory, ready to dispense the largess of their Only 88.6+ Coffee Sourcing Program like a benevolent Pope. With eagle-eyed clarity, luck based intuition, scarcely noticed white privilege and a finely-honed, cupping-calibrated-tongue insured for millions, the great mythical coffee hunter crashes like a fierce wave on the distant shore of coffee mediocrity. Crushing common coffee and coffee commoners like a 10 ton Moby Dick hell-bent on intimidation. The Great and mighty Mythical Coffee Hunter swashbuckles, crusades and swoops, scoring the golden unicorn coffees of which legend tells. Continue reading Hunter vs. Farmer: The Mighty Coffee Hunter vs The Dirty Hands Coffee Farmer
Specialty Coffee is a Journey. A long, arduous journey of seeming contradictions, nonsensical actions and a keen focus on the triple bottom line. This is not a Specialty Coffee only value by any stretch, but it is intrinsically interwoven into the very fabric of what Specialty Coffee means. When we are asked to define Specialty Coffee or Craft Coffee we invariably espouse the benefits of each of the three pillars of profit. Some focus primarily on two of the three, some strive to balance the three, but the vast majority of us societal misfits stick doggedly by our conviction that not only CAN we achieve a balanced triple bottom line but that we SHOULD achieve it. That it is in fact the very purpose of what we believe the business of coffee is based on. In my view the three pillars of Craft Coffee are a balanced focus on: Delicious, quality coffee Honoring craftspeople Getting more people to support both In my view the three pillars of the BUSINESS of Craft Coffee are: People Empowerment Ecological Benefit Financial Profit Put in more marketing style alteration I decided on these: People Planet Profit Done correctly, these three are mutually supportive, triply Continue reading Is Craft Coffee a Bloody Triangle or a Balanced Square?
The sun was rising with equatorial brilliance from the valley floor, casting it’s tingling rays upon my face. The cool, moist tropical breeze tickled my face with fern frond delicacy soothed away the lie of “roosters rise at dawn” still fresh in my mind after the damn rooster who stood righteously outside my little cabin door and started cock-a-doodling starting at about 3am; and never stopped. Sipping fresh made coffee from the very coffee farm I stood upon, gazing across the mountains of Huehuetenango, Guatemala I sighed contentedly. It was spring 2005 and I had arrived on my first origin trip, well after midnight the night before in the highlands of Guatemala after a 13 hour bus and taxi journey that was more precarious and adrenaline filled than I imagined. As I stood on the drying patio at 1550 MASL surrounded by coffee in parchment in varying stages of drying, sorting and quality I asked about each of the various lots of parchment coffee surrounding us. The farmer patiently explained them to me and gave a brief overview of the coffee washing process. I then turned to see a very large pile of dank coffee cherries, leaves and trash in a steaming Continue reading Every Coffee Has A Home. Yet Not Every Home Has Coffee.
I have decided to take on a challenge. (I love challenges.) I’m going to write 30 blog posts on my blog in the next 30 days. For my fellow math challenged, that is one post per day, every day for 30 days. (I hate algebra.) This is not a new idea but I’m usurping it anyway. This challenge is about as far away from this challenge as it can be but I’m still doing it. I actually write a lot and have been writing quite a bit over the last 90 days. But my personal blog has suffered since I have been writing in so many other places . So this is a somewhat selfish exercise in forcing myself to write like a content marketing animal. We are talking about discipline, diligence, and stick-to-it-ivness-osity. <- That word FTW. 30 posts in 30 days. Oh my. I am not going to force myself to stick to any single topic. Although at this time generally they will be centered around the topics I tend to talk about the most anyway. Marketing Craft beer and coffee Social media Big Ideas I created a handy little List.ly list of my blog concepts that Continue reading 30 Posts in 30 Days – Writing Like A Whirlwind