If you follow me over on the ‘gram you’ll know I’m partial to a coffee and a slow morning. Aside from the caffeine hit, there is something about that ritualistic start to the day, my routine which sets me up and lays the foundations, getting me into a headspace that makes me feel ready to take on whatever the day ahead brings. For me, that is quietly preparing everyone’s breakfasts and listening to the girls cackles as they play, then getting the baby down for a nap and climbing back into bed beside him with a hot coffee before I get ready. It is in those precious moments (and they really are precious when they are the quietest ones I will experience for the following 12 hours!) that I can appreciate some solitude, gather my thoughts and prepare myself for the day ahead. Getting in that right frame of mind for me is so important, particularly if it has been an early start, there is just something so therapeutic, so comforting about that space and that first coffee of the day, that feels like an indulgence.
Now when it comes to coffee I am always looking out for sustainable brands, brands that have a positive impact on the environment and on the people who make it all possible. It’s not often you will find big brands on my blog but when Nespresso contacted me to tell me about their responsible sourcing and sustainability practices I was impressed and excited to share it with you.
I have always wanted a coffee machine but dubious of the sustainability of the capsules, as it always seemed like such a waste, but the Nespresso capsules are actually aluminum which makes them ideal for recycling, they are also running a program to make this even easier for people to do, including drop off points at thousands of locations nationwide and collection, you can read more about this here.
But beyond the recycling, delving deeper to the source of production, Nespresso’s current campaign includes heartwarming stories of the people who make it all possible, the ones whom without, we would not be able to have the coffee for our morning fuel, our quiet thinking space or our lively catchup with our friends – the coffee makers.
Since 2003 Nespresso has run their AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program which was launched in collaboration with The Rainforest Alliance, and now works with 70,000 farmers in 12 countries. An initiative to improve the lives of farmers, this program has worked closely with a local cooperative in the beautiful town of Jardin in Columbia, to build a Community Mill, where farmers can bring their coffee cherries and have them transformed into coffee beans in the most consistent and qualitative way. Not only does this save the farmers time, energy and resources on their farms but it means the coffee is consistently of high quality; better for Nespresso, (and ultimately us), but more importantly, it is also better for the farmers as it frees up some of their time which would have been spent labouring on their farms, and also, ensures they receive the highest revenue for their coffee harvest.
These personal stories include the story of Humberto, a dedicated coffee farmer who benefits from the Community Mill. He has been able to support his daughter’s passion for butterflies all the way to University where she is currently studying biology, thanks to the time and resources he saved by processing his coffee centrally.
“Personally, I wanted Andrea to study to be a nurse but she can do whatever she wants. She loves nature and wanted to study biology. I just want her to do what makes her happy and I’m so proud of her.”
Another coffee farmer, Esteban used to process his coffee on his father’s farm but today he benefits from the Community Mill. As a young father of two, he now has more time to spend with his sons as well as volunteering as a fireman in his community.
“I got into firefighting to help people, this is all for my sons, all my work is for them and one day it will be theirs. I couldn’t be happier with the Community Mill. As long as Nespresso will buy my coffee, I’ll keep selling it to them.”
I love these encouraging stories that give us insight into the lives of the coffee farmers, as a “conscious consumer” I want to know that my purchases are having a positive impact – and it really does feel like a privilege, when I first saw the photos included in this post I felt so truly humbled because it is often so easy to forget the chain of events that has to happen for us to consume goods that are so integrated into our personal lives, and the humans beings, all with their own rich tapestry of lives, that are part of this chain. However, it is not just the lives of the farmers who have benefited from the community mill, is it has drastically improved water management practices and helped clean up rivers in the region which were previously extremely polluted.
I was pleasantly surprised to hear about Nespresso’s efforts in sustainability and environmental practices, (you can read more for yourself here) for me it makes that morning coffee, all that more enjoyable to know where it has come from, and to know it has had a positive impact. So cheers to you coffee drinkers, whether it’s your work fuel, your quiet time, your thinking space, your creative juice, here to rituals and habits that make our day so personal, and here’s to doing it with brands that are doing good.
I would love to hear your coffee ritual, let me know in the comments below…
This post was in association with Nespresso as part of their coffee-conscious sustainability campaign.