Supporting the coffee farmers

MIDDLESBROUGH mother and son Baristas Necita and Chris Pounder marked the start of Fairtrade fortnight by helping boost donations to the charity Coffee Kids.

As part of the expanding franchise of Esquires Coffee Houses, a proportion of takings from their two town centre bars will support projects that help coffee farmers and their communities.

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New Beduins milking coffee shop revolution

Where are you reading this? In the office? On your Blackberry? Or, most likely, in a coffee shop?

If you are currently enjoying a latte whilst going about your daily business then you’re far from alone – in fact you’re now officially known as a “new Beduin”, a phrase first coined by the US media to describe the growing band of nomadic workers for whom coffee shops, wherever they may be, are their chosen place of work.

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UK Coffee Roaster Shows Support for Ethiopian Coffee Farmers

Since commencing a program of trademarking Ethiopia’s fine coffee designations in 2004, support for the Ethiopian sector has continued to grow worldwide. Building on its unique coffee heritage and established reputation for producing some of the finest coffee in the world Ethiopia continues to welcome new coffee roasters to its network of licensed distributors.

This month sees the addition to the network of UK based roaster Shropshire Coffee. Established in 1958, Shropshire Coffee prides itself on its record of active support for initiatives that recognize the need to fairly reward coffee growers. Their policies of supporting fairly traded coffee, community coffee farming projects and Rainforest Alliance sources have built a reputation of which owner Guiseppe D’Anna is rightfully proud.

“We have a strong belief in continuing a sustainable, just and ethical way of trading, coupled with giving our customers the best coffee the world has to offer. The Ethiopian Fine Coffee designations trademarking and licensing initiative gives us an excellent opportunity to continue with this policy whilst helping Ethiopia to protect and further develop its exceptional coffees. We at Shropshire Coffee are extremely pleased to be joining the network of licensed distributors.”

Getachew Mengistie, Director General of the Ethiopian Intellectual Property Office which is spearheading the effort in Ethiopia commented, “We warmly welcome Shropshire Coffee to our network. As our latest partners in the UK we look forward to working with the company to further develop awareness and appreciation of the most valuable Ethiopian Fine Coffee and satisfy the needs of its customers”.

Shropshire Coffee joins nine companies in the United Kingdom who currently partner Ethiopia in their network of licensed distributors. Worldwide there are now about seventy licensed distributors of Ethiopia’s Fine coffees. Ethiopia’s aim to reach out to 150-200 companies involved in the specialty coffee sector looks set to take a further great step forward in May 2008, when Ethiopia will be the portrait country at the Specialty Coffee Association of America annual conference.

Contact Details:

Shropshire Coffee: Guiseppe D’Anna +44 1902 787333
EIPO: Getachew Mengistie, Director General, EIPO +251 1 155534969, e-mail:
Ethiopian Embassy London: Gail Warden +44 (20) 7589-7212
For more information on Ethiopia’s Trademarking and Licensing Initiative see the dedicated website:

Atkinson’s coffee wins top award

ATKINSON’S coffee shop in Lancaster has been awarded a gold medal for their El Salvador Santa Barbara coffee at the North West Fine Foods Awards.

The coffee came out on top in a blind tasting and was chosen by a panel of 24 food industry experts.

Ian Steel, Master Roaster at Atkinson’s in China Street said: “The particularly pleasing thing about this award is that it has been given to a coffee that I personally selected from my first trip to origin. When I went to meet the growers of my favourite coffee Las Delicias in El Salvador last year I attended many ‘cuppings’ (Industry jargon for a coffee tasting) on various farms and this coffee stood out as a real gem. I am so pleased for everyone involved in its production that a top gourmet quality product has been rewarded.”

* Atkinson’s has also just been shortlisted as one of only four finalists for the BIBAs’ prestigious Independent Retailer of the Year award. The winner will be announced on March 7.