In the Grinder - Our Daily Coffee Weblog
Farmer Specific Ethiopians: Behind the Veil
We always want to go deeper, beyond the origin to the region, beyond the region to the cooperative or farm, even beyond the farm to the hillside and varietal that make that particular coffee so damn enticing.
Some places allow this exploration quite easily, while others offer a more significant resistance to this journey.
Two years ago we found some farmers, who although in the cooperative, were large enough to keep their coffee separate to allow the farmer to be identified with their coffee and all the hard work that they put into it.
Our journey in this particular case started in November of 2011 in a hotel in Addis Ababa. I was sitting with Takele Mammo, general manager of Yirgacheffee Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, better known as YCFCU and almost as an afterthought, Takele said, “I have some small organic farmers that are big enough to sell their coffees direct, are you intere.. . “ and I cut him off and said, “Of course, I’ll take them all” and thus came to fruition an idea that Tekle Gebrekiros Adhena had been wanting to get through the government and through the unions and he found a ready partner with Takele Mammo and me, Jason Long of Café Imports.
There was not a program, per se, but we decided to make it one and unbeknownst to the farmers, dedicated $1/kg, or 46 cents a pound, special payment back to the farmer on top of the very high – way above fair trade floor price that we already paid for the coffee.
The coffee rocked, hands down, winning top accolades at the Good Food Awards when craftily and expertly roasted by our clients. That was enough to make it worth the trip to Ethiopia and the following summer we set off for Ethiopia highlands with cash in hand and a few gifts of roasted coffee. The trip, as almost all coffee trips are, was beyond expectations, and we arrived announced only a few days in advance with cash in hand. The farmers knew they were getting extra premium, but the premium was much more than expected, often being equal to fifty to seventy five percent of their annual income. We expressed that this was not a lottery ticket that they had won, nor charity, but a premium that we could pay based on the cup. Our nifty little Café Imports cherry selection cards came out and the price to quality link was prosthelytized over and over. This is what we do. We find and develop fine coffees, either by paying more to encourage better production, or by creating markets for these lovely beans.
I know it’s been said over and over and over, and even over again, but there is a whole family behind the coffee. Ayele Dula – father. Almaz Beyene –wife. Lemma Ayele – son. Zevihieu Ayele – son. Meazash Ayele –daugher. Birtuzukan Ayele –daughter. Mulupeta Ayele – son. Tesanesh Ayele –daughter. Haile Ayele – son.
We chose to visit all three farmers and their families and farms that day and heard about the investments that the farmers would do with the cup premiums that they had just received. We knew that this was just the first step and that we had jumpstarted/created a new program here with our actions to pay this premium to the farmers. This year’s coffees are arriving on a fitting time, the summer solstice and we can’t wait to continue onward and upward.
Check out IDs P5076 and 5074 from producers Ayele and Zelele to get involved in this year’s harvest.
Upcoming COE Cuppings in June!
Just FYI, this month we are hosting several Cup of Excellence cuppings in our lab. All are welcome to attend, just please RSVP with email@example.com
-Friday June 7th, 9:30 AM and 11:00 AM
-Friday June 14th, 9:30 AM and 11:00 AM
-The CI Team
www.MPLScoffeemill.com now LIVE!
Check out the latest project from your friends at Cafe Imports by visiting www.MPLScoffeemill.com
This is our new training center where we are holding in depth educational sessions and hands on learning with the newest coffee equipment and industry experts.
The first session can be signed up for HERE
We hope to see you all back in the Mill soon!
Colombia CoE 2013 by Ian Fretheim
Jan. 29, 2013 Coffee rust regains foothold: Researchers marshal technology in bid to thwart fungal outbreak in Central America.
Feb. 9, 2013 Guatemala's coffee rust 'emergency' devastates crops: Guatemala has declared a state of agricultural emergency after a coffee tree fungus blighted about 70% of the national crop.
Mar. 26, 2013 Coffee rust plagues farmers in Mexico: Climate change seen as a factor in spread of fungus, which puts many small growers at risk.
Mar. 25, 2013 As Coffee Rust Devastates Latin America, Colombia's Cenicafé Leads The Resistance.
So I say to the guy, and mind you, I don’t how much of this he’s getting, his English just wasn’t very good, but anyway, I say to him, “Like, dude, I totally get what you guys are doing, and I think it’s awesome. I mean, if you can make a productive and resistant hybrid taste like an heirloom variety arabica, that’d be great.” And he like looks at me, I think this is what you might call a pregnant pause, and he says, “Yes, the cup on these is quite nice.” Which is why I mention that I don’t think he really understood English all that well. I don’t know, I mean, who knows? Maybe he did. Maybe it was just that he didn’t understand coffee? I mean, the national cupper guys were handing out 88s like candy, but like, on coffees that were not at all like candy. Anyway, I meant what I said about the hybrids. Really. If they can cross the problems out while increasing yield and maintaining cup integrity, that’s perfect for like so many roasters, and coffee buyers. I mean, as long as the cup is there, and they can keep the cost down.
Coffee leaf rust, Hemileia vastatrix, was first identified in 1861 in Sri Lanka. Long thought exclusive to Asia and Africa, coffee leaf rust was discovered in Brazil in 1970. Since then, the disease has found its way into most of the world’s coffee producing countries.
CLR brings about the loss of physiological activity in the affected parts of the limb and causes the leaves to fall. Potent onslaughts of the disease can cause branches to wither completely. This weakens the plant and hinders, or even stops, its development. Frequently, badly diseased and weakened coffee trees do not survive... the disease can cause losses which vary from 25 to 45% (Wintgens 515).
By 2009, 40 distinct physiological races of coffee leaf rust had been recognized as carriers of one or more virulence factors (ibid. 519). Virulence factors can be thought of as specific genetic keys unlocking the genetic resistance factors present in coffee varieties. To date, (arguably) the most success in actively thwarting CLR has been with vertical resistance selection hybridization (sprays have been used to success on arabica plants, though without diminishing the risk of repeat infection). In vertical resistance selection, plants are selected for specific resistance factors that are not susceptible to specific virulence factors of the CLR races (evolutionary arms race much?). H. vastatrix can be easily mutated and diversity in coffee genotypes stimulates genetic diversity in the pathogen (ibid. 520) (touche’). Of course, lack of diversity via the development of a single resistant uber-hybrid is not the answer here. Monoculture and the erosion of the gene pool- even should it be in the name of amazing agri-tech- is a grievous underestimation of Dr. Ian Malcolm’s biological imperative theory http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SkWeMvrNiOM. We’ll pick back up with the question of diversity, genetics, and hybrids, of proxy wars fought on agricultural turf, and my visit to Cenicafe in a moment.
Spring being sprung (fits and starts here in MN, but springing at the very least) means that it’s Cup of Excellence time again. First up is Colombia. The international competition, on which jury I was so fortunate as to be included, was held in Pereira at the end of March (our public cupping of the winning lots will be held here in Beautiful Minneapolis on Friday, May 10th at 9:30 and 11:00 am, with the online auction following on Wednesday, May 15th). Despite having worked rather (non-)diligently on some phrases and comprehension, my Spanish remains dismally poor. My last night in Colombia I found myself standing, shivering (sun fever!), light headed and literally near fainting in the fluorescent body care aisle of a grocery store trying to get some aloe vera for a sunburn that only a dim witted gringo of deep north European descent and a strong case of winter fatigue could ever hope to acquire. I say trying here because whatever I said only led me to hand lotion and sunscreen, the latter of which I admittedly was in some need of. In the end, the kind and patient man who was trying to help changed course, wished for me the grace of God and very tenderly offered directions to a late night pharmacy that was just up the street from the grocery.
Now, in the more psychologically oriented Buddhisms of the west, we tend to shy away from karmic theories and descriptions that are too grossly mechanistic, let alone punitory. Nevertheless, it does seem noteworthy that given an extra day in Pereira, a day in which Minneapolis was seasonably blustery, wet and cold, I sent this picture to a couple of friends:
Suffice it to say that this is now the first piece of evidence in a recently begun research into the moral refractions of what I take, religiously speaking, to be a universal and impersonal causality.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like it’s all bitter cups and sour acidity here. Cup of Excellence is really a top notch organization, and they do a great job putting on a challenging event, despite my own shortcomings. To begin, I was a late jury installment. Another person from our office had to cancel, and so I got a call to fill the spot. Great deal, with the caveat that it made my travel arrangements a little more difficult. Some context. I’m not the world traveler type. I don’t have a laundry list of fresh and intelligent gear with which to travel either efficiently or in style. Have you ever seen The Darjeeling Limited? I don’t mean to say that I’m like those guys, I’m not. Obviously as a middle-upper-lower class caucasian male of my generation and education I identify with Wes Anderson’s films (not The Fantastic Mr. Fox; George Clooney is thoroughly out of place in Wes Anderland), but his characters, what with their small apartment’s worth of luggage and severe neurosis, serve more as emotional resonants and curiously well-tuned relational funhouse mirrors. Anyway, if you remember The Darjeeling Limited, I’m actually not unlike Bill Murray’s character. Psychologically speaking- emotional resonants, funhouse mirrors. All this to say that because of my late booking I had to arrive a couple of days early and leave a couple of days late, on late PM and early AM flights. So here I come rolling into the airport in Pereira just after midnight on Saturday morning, full of English and CGI, and the competition organizer has a ride ready for me. No problem. No waiting. With one of those 8.5 by 11 cards with my name on it. And that more or less characterized their end of my trip: organized, informative, and helpful. We’ll come around to more on this in a moment.
First a word about the coffees. This is a Cup of Excellence blog post, after all. The coffees were excellent, and I’m very much looking forward to cupping them here in our lab (Friday, May 10th) before the online auction (Wednesday, May 15th).
I don’t want to give the wrong impression here. When you’re on a CoE jury, you cup a lot of coffee. And then you cup most of it again. And then you cup the best of that yet again. It’s just that I don’t think that you need my profiles and notes in this post. Were the coffees great? Yes, they were. Were the other cuppers professional and on point? Yes, they were (at least in the cupping room they were, I can’t rightly speak to the full extent of all extra-curricular activities. As for myself, I tend to keep the extra-curriculars to a minimum. I just don’t have the constitution for it. By the end of each day of CoE I’m pretty tuckered out.).
The way it usually works is that the hosting organization also arranges for educational type visitations to take place in the afternoon, post cupping. The highlight this time around was a trip to Cenicafe’s laboratory facilities. Cenicafe is the research arm of the FNC. Now, before you get all heirloomier than thou, I would like to describe something of what I learned about coffee (an agricultural industry), arabica varieties, and the trajectory of conversation.
It’s obvious that coffee is agriculture. Sometimes in group settings people are encouraged to ask any questions that they might have on the assurance that someone else in the group also has the same questions. I’d like to suggest on this basis that it is not obvious that coffee is agriculture. What I mean is that I am rarely, if ever, actively engaged in an awareness that coffee is grown, that it is part of a plant, that it is a seed. In fact, the seedness of coffee is quite prior to its role as beverage. This lack of awareness includes my daily interactions with green coffee. I handle green beans as a raw form of roasted product, as the basic building block of a beverage yet to be brewed. I am comfortable asserting that, over and above any well meaning protestation, you also are probably not so different in this.
By the time I’m roasting, or by the time I have a roasted sample, let alone a production roast for my press pot or an espresso at the cafe, I’m so far from considering the agricultural origins of coffee that it’s not even on the radar. No matter how many potted coffee plants, no matter how many origin maps, no matter how many farmer photos. Coffee is an agricultural commodity and as such these things are all just mood and shading, rather than the context, history or practical homage they might suggest. We’re in beef is to cow, pork to pig territory here, but more along the lines of fish is to fish, or chicken to chicken. This orientation is important.
One effect of beefing our cows, or chickening our chickens, is that we get this gap between produce and product. The one is messy, the other clean. This both physically and psychologically. In coffee, in specialty coffee in particular, the resulting psychology is thoroughly that of the consumer. What are the attributes? How does it taste? How does it rate? AKA, what does this coffee do for me? That’s all fine. Here’s the crux though: coffee is huge. I’m not talking about blogs and trending. I’m talking about agriculture, commodity, and production. I’m talking about the part of the coffee world in which plants come to mind when you say the word coffee. Actual plants. (George Clooney shows up in the Google image search before any sort of coffee tree does. -fist shaking-) Where cherries, hectares, kilograms and yes, food, clothing and housing come to mind. Despite the coffee producing world being visited, referenced, and pictorially represented, it seems that the needs and concerns of this world are rarely if ever visited, referenced, or pictorially represented, let alone priced along a supply chain (there are exceptions to this: CoE is one; from our side, we are continually working with producers on opening up ways for us to pay them more (we’re not a charity, and we do have to sell the coffee that we buy- that said, I am proud of the work that we do to accomplish this end).
I went to the Cenicafe facility with a head full of evil and dismissal. Oh, what are they going to do, show us test tubes and tell us that canephora hybrids taste as good as arabica heirlooms? Well, that is what they did. I took some photos of the lab with captions like “Where coffee really comes from” or, “The Santa Claus isn’t real, of coffee” egging me on. Moving through the facility, we paused from time to time for short presentations on the research and work that they were putting into their hybrid program. You know the one- this is where the greedy growing country powers that be destroy my cup quality for things like “productivity” and “disease resistance.” Didn’t they get that cup quality leads to market share, to pricing? Some of the best coffee in the world comes from Colombia- I know because we buy a lot of really great Colombian coffees, I knew because I’d been cupping great Colombian caturras all week long. So what’s the deal here?
Specialty coffee is not a commodity. Well, yes it is. We can deny that the C market, low altitude mechanized coffee production and exchange grade stockpiles have anything to do with throwdowns, mustaches and the latest method of pouring hot water, but that would be little more than denial, and Oprah et al. cleared up for us long ago that denial is not healthy. The question of the hour: Caturra or Castillo? Literally. When we had the opportunity to meet many of the competition’s producers, they all asked versions of this question. And? Well, I know that those estadounidenses that visited last year said that they didn’t like castillo, that caturra was way better (and that I should naturally process all my coffee?). I know that they said that they can pay much, much more for caturra, and that they said that they can’t even sell castillo because their customers don’t like it. At the same time, my caturra sold for $2.50 last year and only $1.60 this year, despite my having done more careful work (and some natural processing!) and its having cupped out at the same score. Plus, farms down the way have been hit by rust, with not just crop but full on tree losses.
See where I’m going here? We sat down for a presentation on the genetically selected (not modified) attributes of the castillo varieties (Cenicafe is not just developing “Castillo”, but rather are developing numerous castillos, regionally specific, diverse iterations of the hybrid) and the hybridization process. The chinks in my armour began to glimmer. Caturra, Bourbon, Tipica, et al- these are plants, again, long before they are beverages, profiles and bag labels. As such, they are susceptible to plant diseases, and environmental conditions. Glimmer. The coffee rust risk is constant, and growing. Losses can be total, meaning tree death and replanting, meaning multiple seasons’ crop loss, income loss, and necessity loss. Another question arises. What is the cost of an arabica coffee crop if these losses and risks, above and beyond those of the hybrid, are accounted for?
This is what I heard (between the lines) from Cenicafe: that arabica coffee is risky, and that it has been risky for a long time. Arabica coffees are generally riskier than the commodity market is rewarding, provided there is a resistant and more productive alternative at the commodity level. The commodity market is riskier than arabica coffees are consistent or transcendent- given that the specialty market, particularly its lower end (80-83) is tied directly to the C. I heard them say that hybrids are less risky, more productive, and comparable in cup. When I let up my resisting this last argument a little, it occurred to me that this cup comparability was functional on the level of specialty, read 80-83 point, coffee. Listen, Cenicafe doesn’t exist just to reduce my cup quality. And they wouldn’t exist- with exceptional funding and a complex and thorough-going body of work to match, if there wasn’t a challenge larger than conspiring against my mouth and my Sunday mornings. Cenicafe is working to improve the stability of Colombian coffee and its market for Colombia and for Colombians, as coffee is a major livelihood generator in Colombia. Obviously I’d prefer if they did this via 91 point tipicas, but it seems that, agronomically speaking, my preference has been deemed less practical than the development of disease resistant, productive hybrids.
Part of the hypothetical takeaway here is, interestingly, that hybrid coffee may actually turn out to be the driving force behind finally freeing specialty coffee from the commodity market (be careful what you wish for, says a severely giggling genie). The presentation at Cenicafe did not prophesy the end of arabica coffee. Far from it. They did, however, hint at a revaluation of the arabica strains. Hey now, don’t worry. They weren’t explicit with this. These are just my conclusions (the views and opinions expressed herein are not necessarily those of the FNC, Cenicafe, or Cafe Imports). It’s all conjecture from here. And armchair at that.
So why did Cenicafe make this presentation to Cup of Excellence jurors? This is a group of people explicitly looking for coffees that exhibit the very best cup qualities of coffee production. These are experienced and trained tasters. These are people who go out on a limb (financially) to pay quite above market prices for incredible auction coffee. I really don’t know. They probably weren’t shooting for us to come to the conclusions that I have shared here. But, the juxtaposition between seeing this hybrid program as presented by its creators, while being on a CoE jury, and while working for a company that works hard each day to pay more for top quality coffees (coffees that quite frankly are defined by not showing many of the cup characteristics associated with hybrid coffee) was really too intriguing.
As I continue to process this experience, I have a number of questions: Will the rust threat just blow over, a footnote in coffee history? Will resistant hybrids be developed with truly impressive cup quality? Will middling and lower quality arabicas give way to stronger producing and resistant hybrid coffees? Will high end arabicas come to be known simply as arabicas- with high end taken for granted- and treated as the incredible produce that they are? One thing at least is certain, and that is that my coffee snob has been checked yet again. How is that 83 point caturra? Well, it’s not a 96 point tropical nectar bomb, sure. It’s nutty. It has some sweetness, and some fruit acidity. It’s good.
I guess what I came away with is that “it’s good” is a revelation. Not the type that displaces or disputes rare and incredible coffees, but the kind in which we sometimes see how what we have right here, in easy access, is nonetheless (and all the more!) remarkable. Like, what if the qualities of an 83 point caturra become rare? Will I go on in four or five more years about how we used to have mid-80’s containers: sweet, clean, nutty, citric all the time, and how now (in 2018?) it’s all hybrid this and hybrid that? 83 is good. Not great, but more importantly, not bad. We cupped a Burundi coffee today that we’ve got over in Australia, just to check in on it. It was creamy, and had nice lemony acidity. Pleasant. Neither life changing, nor a coffee that you’ll win contests with, but clean, sort of profoundly simple, and quite nice. Can resistant hybrids do that? I don’t know. I do know that there’s a market limit to clean-simple-lemon-nutty, though, and I can’t fault Cenicafe for recognizing that limit and finding it incompatible with the downside of the risks involved in running arabicas up against it.
It’s an interesting time for coffee (and for agriculture). I’m from the midwest (Estados Unidos), so what I mean by interesting is scary, precarious, amazing, groundbreaking, unpredictable, pivotal, etc. (midwesterners are extraordinarily subtle and layered with their use of language). Where we will be in even five years it is impossible to say. As a juror in the 2013 Colombia Cup of Excellence competition I gained a deeper understanding of the usual things: an origin’s coffee, my cupping peers, my own predilections and blind spots in cupping. I also learned something quite outside of all this. I learned about ownership v. partnership in the conversation of coffee, about shifting the point of view, about coffee being a word designating a group of plants. I learned to look beyond my mouth and have found in this looking a new level of receptivity and understanding complementary of the critical analysis necessary to my work. I’m also slightly less conspiratorial about coffee hybrids.
Barista Champ Stamps: THE WBC LIST!!
We are so proud to announce the World Barista Championship Finalists using coffee sourced in partnership with Cafe Imports during the 2013 competition in Melbourne!!
1. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Pete Licata, Parisi Bros: Colombia, Finca Primavera by Arnulfo Leguizamo
2. NEW ZEALAND: Nick Clark, Flight Coffee: Kenya Special Prep French Mission Natural
Both of these coffees are really special to us at Cafe Imports because they are projects we have helped develop closely with our producer partners and are exclusive to us. We are so proud that both of these coffees were chosen among hundreds of other options for these two seasoned competitors. These things are what help to justify all the hard work these two producers have done to make their coffee world class caliber.
Good luck Pete and Nick!!
MPLS Coffee Mill Party this Friday Night!
We hope you can make it to the big launch of our new training space, "The MPLS Coffee Mill"
The party is this Friday night May 3rd from 6-10PM
We will have food from Victory 44 and Gastro Truck, beer from Indeed Brewing, music from DJ Sprudge, Jordan of Sprudge.com and coffee roasted by our very own Joe Marrocco!
Come, hang out, enjoy the space, eat some great food, and maybe throw down at the latte art contest sure to happen late in the night.
Check out the awesome post on sprudge.com about the party HERE
We hope to see you here on FRIDAY!!
-The Cafe Imports Team
Huge Congratulations to Pete Licata of Parisi Bros!!
This past weekend was the annual SCAA event in Boston, and along with the expo there was the United States Barista Championship. We had published a list last week of all the people competing with coffees sourced in partnership with Cafe Imports, and three of the six finalists were using coffees we helped source! We are very excited to have such a strong showing in the competition, and even more happy that our amazing customer base felt comfortable enough to lean on us to help them find the perfect show stopping coffee to compete with.
In the end, Pete Licata of Parisi Bros won first place and the title of United States Barista Champion for a 2nd time. Pete was using one of our coffees from Colombia from an amazing producer named Arnulfo Leguizamo. Arnulfo was the 2011 Colombia Cup of Excellence winner, and he is also a member of Associacion Los Naranjos, a coffee you may very well have had from us. Arnulfo's coffees are so spectacular that they are often seperated into microlots, but he does also deliver cherry that contributes to the full containers we have here now.
Pete's success with Arnulfo's coffee, and the fact that two other people in the competition used Arnulfo's coffee and the group lot from Associacion Los Naranjos speaks to how well that coffee translates in espresso. That classic big bodied tropical fruit Huila profile is really a special coffee, and this project is one we are so proud to be as heavily invested in as we are.
Pete is a true champion, and his nearly flawless routine will be one that is sure to be a contender to win the world championship in Australia.
Congrats Pete, and congratulations to all the baristas that used coffees sourced in partnership with us this year in regionals and on the national stage. We support you, we have your back, and we always are here as a resource to help uncover some of the world's finest coffees for competition and your cafes.
The Cafe Imports Team
Barista Champ Stamps: The USBC List!
Here is our list of USBC competitors duking it out in Boston using coffee sourced in partnership with Cafe Imports. Good luck everyone!
1. Josh Taves @coffeeuphigh, Dogwood Coffee Co: Colombia ACES, Finca Miranda by Elsias Munoz
2. Pete Licata @petelicata, Parisi Coffee: Colombia Finca Primavera by Arnulfo Leguizamo
6. Jacque Desmarais @JacqueDesMarais, Kaldis Coffee: Colombia Finca El Diviso by Jose Jordani
1. Andrew Tucker-Macleod @humandroid, Batdorf and Bronson Coffee Roasters: Kenya Kaya AA Kiriti
NEXT Q Class Upcoming in April! Sign Up Available Now!
Café Imports in cooperation with Brewed Behavior offer Q Grader Certification April 22nd-26th in Minneapolis, MN
CQI's Q Coffee System locates specialty coffees at origin and helps to improve those that have the potential to meet specialty standards. The effect is a common language between buyers and sellers that draws attention to more specialty coffees while creating an infrastructure that gives producers greater opportunities to enter the marketplace and to increase their economic viability.
When a coffee moves through the Q Coffee System and becomes verified as a Q Coffee™, it signifies an independent confirmation of quality that can truly be deemed specialty. Green coffee samples are submitted to an In-Country Partner (ICP), and 3 Licensed Q Graders (professionally accredited cuppers) cup and score the coffee. Coffees that meet the standards for green, roasted, and cup quality are issued a Q Certificate. If a coffee does not meet specialty standards, it receives a technical report that explains why.
Reinforcing Standards | A Differentiated Approach
According to SCAA standards, a coffee that receives a score of 80 or above is considered specialty, Q Coffees™ provide an assurance of quality that consumers can trust. While many variables in roasting and brewing affect the taste of coffee, Q Coffees™ confirm that the beans being used are among the highest quality in the world - properly milled and having distinguishable characteristics that separate them from other coffees. A good bean is the first step toward achieving a perfect cup of coffee.
Reinforcing the standards of specialty coffee links everyone in the supply chain with an integrity that shows pride in the product.
Global Prominence and Partnerships
With over 1,000 Licensed Q Graders worldwide - and counting - it is no surprise that the Q Coffee System has been integrated into hundreds of companies around the world.
The Q Coffee System is dependent on our In-Country Partners to facilitate Q Grading around the world. For more information about our ICPs, click here.
Additionally, CQI works with a number of certification organizations, including Utz, TransFair, 4Cs and Rainforest Alliance. Through these partnerships, we aim to create more transparency in the specialty coffee value chain while incorporating social and environmental aspects that support quality.
Just a little sneak preview at the larger album coming shortly...