Monthly Archives: June 2011

183. Coffee ink

2011-06-28 No Comments

I thought I had heard of every innovative, alternative use imaginable for coffee grounds: compost for home gardens, skin care (exfoliant), hair care (sheen and shine) and even home constipation remedies (enema).  Then last week in Nicaragua I met Carlos Vargas, a native of the coffeelands who claims to be the first artist to work […]

182. CRS seeking Fair Trade advisor

2011-06-27 No Comments

My friends and colleagues at our headquarters in Baltimore announced recently that they are hiring a Fair Trade program advisor.  While the job description doesn’t say so, I happen to know the job will involve lots of work on our Fair Trade Coffee Project, contact with lots of farmer-focused Fair Trade roasters and participation in […]

181. Adios, Guatemala

2011-06-24 1 Comment

In a few hours I will be boarding a flight for the United States and leaving Guatemala for good after living and working here for nearly four years.  Two nights ago I had dinner and a great discussion with the owner of a coffee estate — a parting conversation that served to remind me of […]

180. What is the standard for (disclosure in) Direct Trade?

2011-06-22 1 Comment

Over the past week or so, I have stumbled onto the websites of two different roasters who source coffee from a cooperative we support in Central America.  Both are well-regarded Direct Trade roasters.  Both have language on their websites that could be construed to suggest that they source all their coffees directly.  One of them […]

179. People-Centered Development in the coffeelands

2011-06-21 No Comments

When we started this blog in late 2009, the idea was to situate it at the “intersection of coffee and development.”  Dean Cycon is a guy who has spent as many years in that space as anyone, and is writing on a book about his pioneering work there. Meantime, he has loaded the Javatrakkers channel […]

178. Fresh Cup: Rick Peyser is a character

2011-06-20 No Comments

Fresh Cup Magazine has published its annual Coffee Almanac.  The 2011 edition includes great profile of Rick Peyser of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters as part of the magazine’s “Characters in Coffee” series. The article focuses on Rick’s commitment to address the issue of seasonal hunger in the coffeelands, from the initial field research he commissioned […]

177. Who visits this blog? Why? How can we make it better?

2011-06-14 No Comments

These are the three basic questions I am asking visitors to the CRS Coffeelands Blog to answer in a brief survey designed to make this blog better. After blogging here for the better part of two years on issues that are relevant to our work here in the field, it is finally time to better […]

176. Counter Culture’s Direct Trade Transparency Report, take two

2011-06-13 No Comments

It is early June, which means that the rains are falling heavier now here in the coffeelands, and Counter Culture is releasing another Direct Trade Certified Transparency Report in the States to much well-deserved fanfare.  The report may generate less buzz in its sophomore season than it did last year as a rookie sensation, but […]

175. Alejandro Méndez wins! Viva Espresso wins! Latin America wins!

2011-06-07 No Comments

I have made no secret here of my love for Viva Espresso, an incredible café in San Salvador whose single-serve, single-origin, Cup-of-Excellence estate coffees are the best I have had anywhere in the Americas.  So I was delighted to learn that Alejandro Méndez of Viva Espresso brought the World Barista Championship hardware from Bogotá home […]

174. Two minutes for a better coffee blog

2011-06-06 No Comments

Have you ever noticed that when people ask you for “just two minutes of your time,” it almost never takes just two minutes? After 19 months, I am finally trying to learn a little more about who visits this humble blog and why, and what I can do to make it better.  (Right now you […]