This month, we have some exciting news to share! Over the past several months, we’ve been working on some big projects to make it much easier to find coffees you’ll love. We’ve organized our coffees by roast color, improved our packaging and built a brand new website. You’re invited to take a look at our new look, below…
Visit the online store to see all of our new packaging!
With events in New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Portland, and recently in San Francisco, Green Festival is America’s largest and longest-running sustainability and green living event. It brings together a wide array of businesses and organizations with the worthy goal of helping conscious consumers work, play, and live green. Sustainable solutions can be found for everything from food, fashion, and energy, to construction, design and health.
Thanksgiving Coffee was the exclusive coffee sponsor at this year’s event in San Francisco. With our focus on social and environmental sustainability, it was a perfect pairing. As attendees entered the Festival Pavilion hall, our smiling faces and aromatic and delicious coffees greeted them. Our coffee was also served at the Green Festival café to rave reviews.
San Franciscans have a passion for coffee that was plain to see during the festival. We served about 2500 sample cups over the three day event! We also gave away about 600 sample packs for folks to try at home. Attendees asked interesting and thoughtful questions all weekend!
“What countries do you get coffee from?”
“What are you doing to support the cooperatives you buy from?”
“How are you different from other coffee companies?”
“How do you define sustainability?”
“How is Thanksgiving Coffee practicing what it preaches?”
Our answers deepened attendees understanding of not only our business model, but also the entire coffee chain. They also gained an appreciation for how much is involved in producing a single cup of coffee.
Our staff worked hard for three days, and the appreciation and thanks we received from everyone left us smiling and thankful for the opportunity to be Green Festival’s 2014 coffee sponsor.
by Marchelo Bresciani, Marketing Coordinator at Thanksgiving Coffee Co.
Located in Fort Bragg off of Highway 1 next to CVS, Downhome Foods, and Los Gallitos- Cafe JAAVY is a recent and welcome addition to the area’s breakfast cafe scene. They opened for business in April, but this family owned business has deep local roots. Owned by Margarita Valenzuela and her husband Efrain who is known by locals as “Red”, the name “JAAVY” is an acronym for the names of their three children: Jessica, Adam, Andrew, with the V and Y signifying their last name ‘Valenzuela’ and Margarita’s maiden name ‘Yanez’.
The family has owned and operated Los Gallitos restaurant for 8 years. The popular destination for great authentic Mexican food is frequently filled with happy local customers, so when a space opened up nearby, they jumped at the opportunity to expand. Cafe JAAVY serves authentic Mexican breakfasts, along with more traditional breakfast items and smoothies, at a very reasonable price for the quality. I recently ate there with my wife, and a full breakfast for the two of us was only $20 including the tip! I thoroughly enjoyed the French Toast which was covered with fresh local berries, and she polished off the breakfast sandwich before I could steal a bite, it was that good!
Andrew (Margarita’s oldest son) was our server, and he makes a delicious cappuccino. Our Roastmaster, Jacob Long, personally trained him to make the coffee drinks, and he tells me that Andrew picked up the barista work faster than anyone, and is one of the best in the area. They serve our Guatemalan Song Bird coffee, and this flavorful brew was a perfect pairing with the meal. They are open from 7:30am – 1pm six days a week (closed on Sundays), so stop in and break your fast with some quality local food and coffee.
Here is a link to Google Maps with their location.
In February of 2013, Thanksgiving Coffee staff visited the farm of Alexa Marín Colindres, a member of the PRODECOOP Cooperative in Nicaragua. We toured her farm, listened to her heartbreaking story, and wondered how we could help. Later that day, we did a blind cupping of 20 of the cooperative’s coffees, and asked that her coffee be included.
We sipped and slurped for two hours to get through them all, scoring each coffee on Fragrance, Aroma, Body, Acidity, Flavor Notes and Balance. One coffee was, hands down, the best on the table – and it turned out to be Alexa’s. We bought 10 sacks (all that was available), and are proud to offer you this special coffee, and invite you to help.
Meet Alexa. She lives with her two teenage sons in the mountains of Northern Nicaragua, where they focus on growing the best coffee possible. She has been a coffee farmer for many years and has worked with the cooperative PRODECOOP since 1992.
In 2013, Alexa noticed that the leaves on her coffee trees were affected by La Roya, a fungal disease which attacks the leaves and prevents them from converting sunlight into energy. The coffee cherries turn brown and fall off before ripening, and the tree eventually dies.
La Roya is thought by many in the coffee industry to be one of the many challenges brought on by Climate Change. This disease is sweeping across coffee country, devastating the coffee trees of many small, family farmers – and threatening their way of life.
For some, this will mean starting over – even on a new piece of unaffected land. For others, it may mean removing or pruning affected trees and replanting where necessary.
Want to Help? Support Project: La Roya
Alexa’s coffee is fabulous and we want her coffee farm to thrive – so we decided to rally our customers to support her and other farmers battling La Roya. In March 2014, we launched Project: La Roya with our partners at The Social Business Network (SBN) in Nicaragua.
The project will raise $10,000 to help the farmers of PRODECOOP stop the spread of this disease and re-plant 5,000 coffee trees that have been affected. $2 from every bag of Finca de Alexa coffee sold will be invested in Project: La Roya.
We’re proud to announce that we now offer Numi Organic Tea in our online store!
Numi is dedicated to sustainable values, to quality and to their communities – local and global. All of Numi’s teas and blends contain organic teas and/or herbs, as well as 100% real botanicals, including fruits, flowers and spices – no additional flavorings, oils or fragrances are ever added. They are at the forefront of the introduction of PuŸerh (pu-err), an ancient healing tea, picked from 500-year old wild, organic tea trees, in Yunnan, China. We carry 11 varieties of Black, Green, Herbal and Decaf teas from Numi. Add some tea to your next coffee order!
Numi’s packaging materials are biodegradable and/or recyclable, and over 95% incorporate post-consumer waste or bamboo. Packages are produced in a solar-powered facility and printed with soy-based ink. They use natural, biodegradable filter-paper tea bags, rather than “silky” tea sachets made from plastic or genetically-modified corn.
Numi is committed to ethical sourcing that supports the rights and the livelihoods of farmers and of farm workers. They are the largest importer of Fair Trade Certified Teas in to the U.S. We are proud to partner with Numi and offer their teas to you.
–> Try some Numi Organic Tea
Each year, we like to put together a special blend for the harvest and holiday season – to accompany cold weather, holiday meals and family gatherings.
Our 2013 Holiday Blend brings together coffees from Nicaragua and Indonesia, roasted individually to articulate their sweetness and develop a complex, full-bodied cup. The result is a big, bold blend with notes of plum and cashew and a smooth, savory finish.
In a big, 1.5 pound bag (twice our normal bag size), the Holiday Blend is a great way to stock up on coffee for the holiday season, and makes a great gift. We hope you enjoy it. Happy Thanksgiving!
Want us to ship gifts to your friends and family? Choose “Ship To: someone else” when you add coffee to your shopping cart – you can ship to multiple locations in a single order!
(offer ends 12/1/13)
Cody has been working for Thanksgiving Coffee, off and on, since he was 18 years old. He’s done almost every job on our production floor. He started on the packaging line – filling 12 ounce bags for the grocery store shelves and our online store. Next, he spent his days bulking – filling 5 lb bags for the many cafes and restaurants that serve our coffee. After that – he drove deliveries and visited our customers face to face. When a roasting position became available, he took it on, and has been loving it ever since.
In a typical day, Cody is ordering green coffee beans, roasting and blending hundreds of pounds of coffee each day, and cupping coffees with our Roastmaster, Jacob Long to make sure each roast is spot on. “My favorite part is when we get a new coffee and we’re trying to dial it in. I like the exploration and freedom – it’s exciting and there are so many different things you can try to develop it – I love all of it.”
Last year, he attended the Roaster’s Guild conference and was featured in Roast Magazine. “I’ve always been passionate about coffee but when I went to the Roasters Guild it threw me over the edge. Working in coffee never gets dull for me. I don’t know there’s another job out there where you get to experience something that was grown all over the world – it’s a rarity. Byron’s Maracaturra from Nicaragua is my favorite coffee right now – I love the big bean factor and it’s got everything – all the flavors I like.”
Our partners at Ético: The Ethical Trading Company, along with the British NGO Social Business Network are pioneering the first ever initiative to Recognize the Unpaid Work of Women in Ethical Supply Chains.
Traditionally, the price for commodity products (like coffee) include only direct input and labor costs, and fail to recognize or take into account the supporting unpaid work, which is done mainly by women. This is the first time that rural women’s unpaid work has been recognized as a necessary input into production – one that should be valued and remunerated.
The initiative developed in 2008 during a visit of the Body Shop with the Juan Francisco Paz Silva Cooperative in Achuapa, Nicaragua. Ético gender advisor Catherine Hoskyns conducted a pilot study of women’s labor in sesame production. Her initial findings revealed that when women’s indirect labor (eg. cooking food for field laborers) and more general domestic work are included, this counts for around 22% of the total labor input in sesame.
The results of the study were used to apply an additional cost to the price of the sesame oil for cosmetics, and has since been used to apply similar costs to the sales of coffee from Nicaraguan Cooperatives. The Cooperatives use the increase in price margin to organize women’s empowerment activities in their communities, such as education, savings and loans schemes and labor organization, which bring women together and strengthen the cooperatives.
Nick Hoskyns, Founding Director of Ético, states, “when you bring together committed partners, you can use business to effect real change….with such good collaborators, we have shown that we can still make trade fairer, just as we did with the establishment of Fair Trade.” Hoskyns credits cooperative organizations with being instrumental in the implementation of this initiative and using the additional funds so effectively for women’s empowerment.
At Thanksgiving Coffee, we’re proud to partner with Ético to implement projects at origin.
by Kim Moore, Director of Business Development
The new Exploratorium at Pier 15
My favorite sign at the new Exploratorium is posted above one of the main entrances. It reads:
“HERE IS BEING CREATED THE EXPLORATORIUM, A COMMUNITY MUSEUM DEDICATED TO AWARENESS”
If you’ve never visited the Exploratorium or know what it is…now is the time to visit. It is, in the words of the Exploratorium, “an eye-opening, always-changing, playful place….with thought-provoking exhibits, tools, programs, and experiences that ignite curiosity, encourage exploration, and lead to profound learning.”
The Exploratorium from above
Pier 15, which extends out into San Francisco Bay, has been converted from a legacy marine freight and passenger terminus into a world-class “learning lab” museum for tourists and local visitors.
If you’ve heard that the Exploratorium is for kids, well, it is – for kids of all ages! People who love to wonder will appreciate the Exploratorium experience.
Having said that, the majority of the Exploratorium’s visitors are adults with no young people in tow. Check it out during your next SF visit!
The Seaglass Restaurant
Clay Reynolds & Loretta Kellar of Coco500 are the culinary team behind the Seaglass Restaurant and the Seismic Joint Grill & Coffee Café at the Exploratorium, operated by Bon Appetit Management Co.
In addition to the stellar cuisine, both restaurants serve Exploratorium Blend Coffee and Espresso, developed in collaboration with Thanksgiving Coffee as their proprietary blend. Both eateries are accessible without paid entrance to the museum.
The New Exploratorium and the Seaglass Restaurant/Seismic Joint Grill and Café are now open at Pier 15 in San Francisco, exciting the minds and palates of new and returning visitors, with mind-expanding exhibits, sumptuous cuisine and smooth, delicious specially-roasted and blended coffee and espresso.
Learn more at: www.exploratorium.edu/visit/restaurant-cafe