Kinds of Coffee
While single origin coffees can offer unique experiences, they may not – in a single bean – carry all the qualities that are looked for in an ideal coffee. For example, a very bright coffee (that is, a fruity or acidic coffee) may need to be balanced out with an earthier tasting bean. Our signature blends of coffee are roasted, blended and tasted to provide balance and an all around great tasting cup. But hey, this isn’t Brave New World – we want our brews to have their own personalities as well.
These days, organic produce and goods are enjoying a wider popularity. A walk through your local supermarket will demonstrate the growing organics section, not to mention the number of farmers’ markets specializing in organic produce. This growing movement is in response to peoples’ increased awareness of health benefits, ecological sustainability and support of local commerce.
Organically grown coffee is raised without the use of dangerous pesticides or synthetic fertilizers that would augment or protect the crop. Most often they are grown in the shade of trees that protect the shorter coffee plants, keeping them at their preferred growth temperature, and in tandem, maintaining bird habitats. The setback? Coffee matures slower under these conditions, costing more for the farmer and the buyer, and this explains the premium price that organic goods garner on the shelf.
Given the increased cost, how can you be sure that the higher price you’re paying is for a genuinely organic product? Enter the government. Any product that is to be retailed as ‘organic’ must pass investigation and adhere to strict national standards. In Canada, these are set by the Canadian Organic Regime, and in the United States by the National Organics Program, and enforced by third party organizations. Any deviation results in products being recalled and a revoking of organic status.
For more information, go to www.ocpro.ca
FAIR TRADE COFFEE
If you ever delved into the history of coffee, particularly of South or Central America, a saddening trend emerges. With the rise of coffee’s value as a commodity, many countries pushed to increase their production, with immigrants enslaving the indigenous peoples or importing African slaves to work the farms. This egregious imbalance of power and wealth precipitated rebellions, led to the unlawful appropriation of natives’ land and environmental damage.
To this day, coffee farmers suffer exploitation. To change this status quo, fair trade practices have been implemented. What does it mean? It means that coffee farmers get a guaranteed price for their coffee, and should its value rise, the farmer also sees an increase. These returns help improve working conditions, provide the means and infrastructure for educating farmers and their families and promote better, sustainable farming practices.
23 Degrees Roastery only purchases fair trade coffees and is accountable to Fairtrade Canada. We keep an open book policy with full transparency and regular audits to ensure that the drink we enjoy in our lives helps improve the lives of the people who produce it.
For more information, go to fairtrade.ca