Farmer-Owned Coffee Coop Merges with Online Coffee Marketplace

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The Pachamama Coffee Cooperative, a farmer-owned distributor
of premium coffee, recently announced its merger with Farm to Cup, Inc., an online
coffee marketplace founded in 2011 by three classmates at the Stanford
Graduate School of Business.

Pachamama Coffee, founded in 2001 and based in Sacramento, California, is the
hub of a worldwide collaborative of 140,000 coffee farmers that brand and
distribute their best coffee directly to consumers. This direct relationship
provides consumers with access to high quality coffee and compensates farmers
with the retail price of coffee-giving farmers and consumers control over the
entire supply chain.

“For coffee farmers in Ethiopia and other coffee-producing countries to improve
their standard of living and continue to grow this luxury product, a larger
percentage of the retail dollar needs to reach those farmers,” said Tadesse
Meskela, manager of the Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union in Ethiopia and
a member of Pachamama’s board of directors.

Pachamama’s unique business model is one of the first successful cross-cultural
farming cooperatives uniting family farmers from Ethiopia,
Peru, Guatemala, Nicaragua,
and Mexico.
The Farm to Cup acquisition is part of Pachamama’s initiative to accelerate
growth in the online farmer-direct coffee market in North
America. In 2011, Pachamama launched the first global Community
Supported Agriculture (C.S.A.) program for coffee, CoffeeCSA.org, which offers
U.S.
consumers the convenience of freshly roasted organic coffee, delivered
straight to their doorsteps from small-scale farmers.

“The farmer-direct business model is a powerful alternative for small-scale
producers and consumers of the world’s most coveted crops. Farm to Cup’s
successful web-based platform (farmcup.com) fits well with Pachamama’s goal of
selling coffee in the most direct way possible. This is a smart move for coffee
farmers” said Thaleon Tremain, Pachamama’s CEO.

Says Farm to Cup CEO Monica Lewis, “Our mission is to disrupt the coffee
industry by providing the most direct connection to growers and to empower
everyone in the supply chain. Treating people with dignity, the land with
respect and thinking for the long term-these are outcomes that today’s
consumer has the right to demand.” Farm to Cup Chief Operating Officer Catha
Mullen will stay on as strategic adviser to the company.

About Pachamama’s CoffeeCSA.org
CoffeeCSA.org is a Community Supported Agriculture model that allows consumers to subscribe
to regular deliveries of fresh-roasted coffee from family farmers around the
world. CoffeeCSA.org is a project of Pachamama Coffee, the
first global cooperative of coffee farmers, consisting of more than 140,000
small-scale farmer-owners in Peru,
Nicaragua, Guatemala,
Mexico and Ethiopia.

Founded in 2001, Pachamama Coffee Cooperative is the largest farmer-owned
coffee co-op based in the U.S.A.
and is the only coffee company to use sophisticated information technology
that lets coffee farmers tell their own stories to con-sumers. All of
Pachamama’s coffees are produced by family farmers, hand-roasted in small
batches, and sold online and at independent retailers throughout the United States.

The thousands of family farmers who own Pachamama Coffee tend small farms of
one to ten acres. The coffee is hand-harvested by family members, not
machinery. All Pachamama’s coffee is grown organically, which results in
practices that nourish the land. Instead of using chemical pesticides, farmers
plant shade trees to provide habitat for birds and beneficial insects. Because
chemical fertilizers are not allowed, farmers utilize the coffee cherry pulp
to nourish the soil, resulting in cleaner water and healthier communities.

About Farm to Cup
Farm to Cup was launched in 2011 by Monica Lewis and twins Caroline and Catha
Mullen as an online coffee marketplace for farmers in to sell their coffee
di-rectly to American consumers. The founders were inspired to create an online
link between coffee farmers and consumers on a trip to Guatemala with the Stan-ford Center
for Social Innovation. The “Ah Ha” moment came traveling between farms Finca El
Faro, San Juan de la Laguna and the As Green As it Gets, when they realized
that each farmers’ coffee was unique and that they lacked an easy way to market
this. Farm to Cup’s online platform was created to give the con-sumer the
chance to travel to coffee’s origin and buy directly from coffee farms.

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