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Common Man Coffee Roasters /
Posted 9 months ago

This Earth Day, we’ve taken the time to reflect on why it is we do what we do each day. We see our mission at CMCR as contributing to the democratisation of great coffee. By making direct-trade, specialty-grade coffee accessible and enjoyable to as many people as possible, we can actively work to replace unsustainably sourced, low-grade commodity coffee, ensuring that more value makes its way up the supplychain to the producers. Alongside providing a great tasting product, we remain active in educating consumers about where their coffee comes from, who farmed it, and the impact its sale has on the communities in which it was grown. By cultivating long-term relationships, producing communities are able to to plan for their future avoiding a reliance on quick cash crops or mono-cultures like palm oil or rubber, which contribute to ecological destruction. To highlight our ethos towards the sourcing of our coffee, here is a brief case study from Raw Materials, Colombia: We have been buying multiple containers of specialty-grade coffee from Raw Materials’ Colombia association of growers, along with our partners Five Senses Coffee, for the past 3 years and have seen a more than 100% increase in returns to farmers from our involvement, allowing for upgrades to their equipment and more training on quality improving processes. In our view, the establishment of long-term, mutually beneficial supply relationships creates positive feedback loops, where farmers and mills can see a reliable source of revenue for seasons to come, giving them confidence to invest in capital expenditure and human resources, which in turn increases the quality of the final product. It can even go so far as to support work to undo damage already done, such as the Trees for Kibira reforestation project piloted by that we have supported on an ongoing basis since 2018. Trees For Kibira is a long-term project focused on planting indigenous African trees around every hill in Burundi where our coffee is grown, mitigating the effects of a changing climate and encouraging the practice of sustainably grown coffee. It is hoped that these plantings aid the health of the local rainforest, Kibira Forest, and the coffee-growing communities that live near its edge. The progress being made is evident and provides promise for all of us in the industry, that having a positive impact is both possible, and rewarding in a multitude of ways.

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