Guaya'b

Guayab—Huehuetanango, Guatamala

Farmer Facts

Working as family units, the farmers of the Guaya’b Cooperative carefully handpick each day’s ripe fruit and attend to the processing of their coffee on their farms in small-batches. Rich volcanic soils, antique bourbon and typica varietals and dense shade come together in the farmers’ hands to produce small volumes of exceptional coffee. A classic example of their Huehuetenango appellation, the farmers’ coffee has a rich cherry sweetness, lush floral notes, and a deep wine-like body.

Thanksgiving Coffee Company has purchased the Guaya’b Cooperative’s coffee since 2003.

The Coffee: A deep, wine-like body with juicy cherry sweetness, cacao nibs and sugary molasses.

Farmer Stories

Read more about our work with Guaya'b

Global Coffee Expo Recap

Global Coffee Expo Recap

It’s the biggest event in coffee, sponsored by the biggest names in coffee, held in what is probably America’s most coffee-obsessed city. It’s every coffee nerd’s dream, and seven of our team from Thanksgiving Coffee Company had the opportunity to attend this year. The Global Coffee Expo is a three day event with all the players in the coffee industry, put on by the Specialty Coffee Association. Roasting, importing, producing, farming, equipment, ideas, publications – there is so much to see and do at this convention.

Specialty Coffee Association

Above: The SCA logo on cupping mugs at the Global Coffee Expo

Stepping into the launch party on night one was an experience all in itself. At the Paramount Theatre in downtown Seattle, thousands of coffee professionals from all over the world flooded the floors. There was a virtual reality farm tour, a video from the board of the SCA, cold brew samples from Starbucks, a latte art throwdown, and networking with some of the most prominent people in coffee. It was overwhelming and spectacular — and a great way to kick off an exciting weekend.

Paramount Theatre in Seattle

Above: The Paramount Theatre in downtown Seattle hosts the SCA Global Coffee Expo launch party

The Specialty Coffee Association turns 35 this year. The years that have gone by have changed the association in many ways, but it remains at its core, a place for people to come together and fight for the greater good of everyone involved in the coffee industry. Thanksgiving Coffee’s Co-Founder and CEO Paul Katzeff was part of the team that founded the SCAA back in 1982, and has been an integral part of the association (and its president twice) through the decades.

Paul Katzeff at the Global Coffee Expo

Above: Paul Katzeff at the Global Coffee Expo launch party

The weekend was of course a whirlwind, full of lectures, meetings, walking the Expo floor, and naturally, lots of coffee breaks! We tasted coffee from Kenya, Colombia, Ethiopia, Uganda, Nicaragua, India, and many more origins. We met old friends and new, listened to lectures from coffee professionals, and visited our Fairtrade certification.

We were also able to take a peek into the newest publications that have featured Thanksgiving Coffee recently: Fresh Cup Magazine’s article on coffee bag packaging, and Stir Magazine’s feature on our Congo Coffee, benefiting the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International.

One of the main highlights of these conventions is the opportunity to meet with our producers – the human beings behind the coffee farms. Throughout the year, we speak with these folks over email and telephone, but at rare moments like these, we’re able to spend time with them face to face. We get to catch up on life and family and learn how their farms and co-ops are doing. We got some fun shots with a few of our friends:

Congo Coffee from Thanksgiving Coffee

Above: the SOPACDI co-op team from the Democratic Republic of Congo with the Thanksgiving Coffee team from Fort Bragg, California

Sara Corrales and Joan Katzeff

Above: Sara Corrales of the Los Pinos Farm in Nicaragua, and Joan Katzeff, co-founder of Thanksgiving Coffee

Jacob and Lucas at the Global Coffee Expo

Above: Jacob Long, Roastmaster and Director of Coffee at Thanksgiving Coffee, and Lucas Silvestre of the Guayab Co-op in Guatemala

Fatima, Joan, Nicholas

Above: Fatima Ismael of SOPPEXCCA in Nicaragua, Joan Katzeff of Thanksgiving Coffee and Nicholas Hoskyns of Etico in Nicaragua


We here at Thanksgiving Coffee want to give a HUGE thank you to the volunteer team that worked so hard at the Global Coffee Expo. Conventions like these simply cannot happen without the help of volunteers, and we are all indebted to you!

Take a peek below at some of the fun we had while in Seattle at the Specialty Coffee Association convention. After the Roasters Guild mixers, morning presentations, photo booth fun, and walking tens of thousands of steps across the show floor, we are going to need the rest of the week to rest and catch up.

The Thanksgiving Coffee team at Global Coffee Expo, with Nicholas of Nicaragua, and Isak of Rwanda

Joshua Long, Jacob Long, Paul Katzeff, Joan Katzeff and Jen Lewis outside the Washington State Convention Center

The Seattle skyline from our Airbnb in Queen Anne

Marchelo Bresciani at the Fairtrade America booth

Jacob, Josh and Nathan inspecting new roasting equipment

Joan and Paul Katzeff, co-founders of Thanksgiving Coffee Company

Jen Lewis with Jennifer Pawlik of Amavida Coffee Roasters, a fellow B Corporation

At the International Women in Coffee Association (IWCA) breakfast 

Thank you, volunteers

Jacob Long and Joshua Long with Kenyan dancers at the Global Coffee Expo launch party

Attending the Fairtrade America cupping 


We’ll see you in 2018, Seattle!

Stay tuned for some individual posts from our team that attended the show!

Bird Friendly Coffee Certification

Bird Friendly Coffee Certification

Bird Friendly CoffeeSmithsonian Migratory Bird Center (SMBC) certification is another step we are taking at Thanksgiving Coffee to verify that the coffees we purchase and co-brand with them are truly coming from farmers who support and maintain “Bird Friendly” habitat on their farms .

The SMBC certification is “the undisputed “Gold Standard” when assessing forest habitat for the quality of its ability to support not just birds, but all the species that live and make their home in a particular indigenous forest . The standards that the Smithsonian scientists have set are based on rigorous research into the nature of the forest itself, its remaining over-story size and density, its type of remaining trees, the numbers of levels of “over-story” and how our coffee agriculture has been integrated into the original Habitat.

At the heart of the certification is the absolute of no use of oil based Fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides. The coffee farm must first be Certified Organic before it can begin the SMBC certification assessment process.

Thanksgiving Coffee is a certified organic Roastery. We follow strict rules set by USDA . About 85 % of our coffees we purchase are Certified organic, but as of this writing only our coffees from Guatemala (Guaya’b Cooperative) and from Nicaragua (Byron Corrales’ Family Farm) are SMBC Certified. These coffees represent only 15% of our Roastings at this time.

After meeting with SMBC scientists in May of this year in Washington DC (Their offices are located at the National Zoo) we set up a plan to have each cooperative we buy from in Nicaragua, Mexico, Costa Rica, Bolivia, Peru, Uganda, and Rwanda, assessed for the “Bird Friendly” certification. Where farms are organic but lack the shade standards needed for the SMBC certification, we will work with the cooperative’s Board leadership to put forest restoration practices in place to enable certification. One by one these farm habitats will be certified.

Our goal is to have 85 % of our coffees SMBC Certified by 2020.

With collaboration and help from The Smithsonian Outreach program for coffee farms we hope to bring a wide range of coffee farms into this Gold Standard certification. Our relationship with the leadership of the SMBC is a close one. We see this as strong support for The American Birding Association Songbird Coffee we sell under a licensing agreement we have had since 1996. Their members, who focus on their love of and protection of migratory songbirds, depend upon the science of the SMBC for their assurance that the money they spend on coffee is being spent in the name of protecting them, and we at Thanksgiving Coffee mean to assure our Songbird followers that the highest level of awareness goes into the coffee they drink each morning, and that the birds out there are able to feed their young, build their homes and fatten up enough to make their amazing migrations each year.

Paul Katzeff, Co-FounderSincerely,
Paul KatzeffCo-Founder & CEO
Roastmaster Emeritus

 

 

 

Shop Song Bird CoffeeTry Song Bird Coffee

These coffees benefit the American Birding Association, which works to inspire people to enjoy and protect wild birds through publications, conferences, workshops, tours, partnerships, & networks.

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Guaya’b—Sustainable Development

Guaya’b—Sustainable Development

The farmers of the Guaya’b Cooperative grow coffee under a dense forest canopy that doubles as the winter home for dozens of species of migratory birds as well as local flora and fauna. It wasn’t always this way.

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