There’s an awful lot more to coffee than meets the eye. For many, it’s just a necessary pick me up at the start of another busy day at work. But to us, it’s a journey. Our team has spent a great deal of time discovering the journey that is often referred to as ‘bean to cup’ – but we are committed to going even further. We have been inspired to find out what life is like for coffee growers in East Africa and to understand some of the challenges that they face, as well as other members of their communities. Although not universally true, we’ve found that although coffee growers often produce a fantastic crop, they are not always sufficiently remunerated for their hard work and expertise.
That is why we are committed to ensuring that the great folk that produce our coffee are paid above the Fairtrade and above the market price. What does this mean? Well at the very least, it means that the producers receive a comparatively decent price for the coffee that they grow and harvest. But we have come to learn that this isn’t enough. We feel that our responsibility should go further than this. That’s why we also reinvest a proportion of our profits into our sister charity, The Zuri Project. The Zuri Project is a not for profit organisation that works in a coffee growing region in Southwestern Uganda called Kanungu. We have also partnered with Kigezi Coffee Academy (KCA), a grassroots organisation led by Joshua Rukundu that supports over 6000 smallholder coffee growers across the district.
We have many exciting projects with KCA, but our focal project is seeking to improve coffee growing practices across the region and investing in necessary infrastructure to make this a reality. Moreover, since 2017, we have planted 1500 coffee trees in Uganda, supported the building of a secondary school, redeveloped a primary school and also made improvements to a dilapidated health centre – all in coffee growing communities. We believe that by contributing to large scale projects such as these, we can positively impact the whole community, and therefore in a small way, improve the livelihoods of coffee producers and their families.
For more information about our social impact and our work in Africa more generally, check out our blog or drop us a message if you have any questions.