Relationship Coffee Co. ensures that our coffee meets all standards for naturally organic, Fairtrade, Shade grown and Bird Friendly certification. We travel to where the coffee is grown and build relationships with the farmers that allows us to be reassured about the quality of the coffee and that sustainable income is being directed to the farmers and their families. These small scale African farmers have grown coffee for generations using only natural methods that are totally environmentally friendly. The coffee beans are all hand picked, sorted and dried according to age old techniques passed on from generation to generation.
Sustainable community development is the key to success. These farmers need more that just money....they need the opportunity to become more self-sufficient and develop a sustainable business income that will provide for nutritional food, proper medicine and education for their families so they can attain a better life.
Relationship Coffee business model is based on layers of trust - between the grower and the roaster and between the consumer and the roaster. We are very passionate about coffee and for me there is something very satisfying about being able to trust people – rather than corporations.
We currently are working with farmers in 35 villages in the Padyere, Jonam and Okoro counties in the Nebbi and Arua Districts of Uganda. These highland areas provide ideal ecological conditions for production of high quality Arabica coffee. Altitude ranges from 1500 m to 2200 m and the temperature ranges between 13 to 26 degrees Celsius. The soil is very rich and fertile in this West Nile region.
We also work with small scale Rwandan farm groups near Lake Kivu in the northern mountainous coffee and tea growing areas. This year we have expanded to develop relationships with several coffee farmers in Burundi and tea farmers in the Cedarberg mountain area of eastern South Africa.
Each farmer has approximately 0.2 hectare of land. Since these farms are quite small, agricultural practices can be monitored closely and the quality of care for each coffee tree maintained at a high level. Beans are hand picked at just the perfect ripeness and processed the same day.
The coffee beans are catalogued and labelled separately by each farmer so they can be easily tracked to the final product.
We expanded to work with African small scale farmers that grow herbal and black tea, sugarcane sugar, vanilla beans and cocoa beans.
The Relationship Business Model is based on two essential priorities:
1. Equitable price for the product:
· Fair price that adequately provides income to maintain a viable business operation that includes payment of all production costs and a reasonable profit
2. Develop infra-structure for the industry:
· Re-investing part of the profit back into community development
· Building infra-structure for the industry to operate more efficiently
· Establish opportunities for the producers to become involved in the marketing and sales strategy development
· To establish micro-financing loans for farmers to improve their farming operation
RELATIONSHIP BUSINESS MODEL ETHICS:
- Sustainable income
- Environmentally sound
- Agricultural excellence
- Joint ownership
- Product tracking
- Superb quality