Sisters of Coffee
Here are some women who make us look forward to waking up each morning.
Based in Duluth, Minnesota, City Girl Coffee is more than just a cute company with a chic look. It also brings awareness and equality to women of the coffee industry. At an event for the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (see conclusion of this post), Founder Alyza Bohbot, whose family began Alakef Coffee Roasters, was inspired to source all of the company’s product from women coffee farmers, and in turn, to work with the IWCA to give back to these women. CGC gives a portion of each sale to organizations that support women farmers and surrounding communities in Brazil, Guatemala, Peru, Sumatra, and Mexico. You can order online, and even get monthly “Sipscriptions.”
Based in Austin, Texas, cold brew and whole bean purveyor Kohana was first conceived by Founder Victoria Lynden during a trip to Hawaii, when she and VP of Operations Piper Jones took shelter in a coffee shack to escape a tropical downpour while riding mopeds. The coffee aroma inside was heavenly. The name “Kohana” refers to the small white flower that signals the arrival of the coffee bean. Kohana is the only company to offer cold brew concentrate sourced exclusively from women farmers. Slender cans allow you to enjoy flavors like Volcanic Black, Island Latte, and Salted Caramel, at your desk, on your way to the gym, or on vacation in paradise.
Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Thread Coffee is a women and queer owned coffee roasting company and worker-cooperative that emphasizes a transparent model of trade. All of its contracts and financials are open and available to the public. Thread envisions “Revolution Through Coffee” to show solidarity with social movements throughout the world that have turned to coffee as a means to support their autonomy, from the Zapatistas and Las Abejas of Mexico, to the women of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Thread also allows customers to pre-purchase coffee and their own tins that can be re-filled throughout the year, to drastically reduce wasteful packaging.
She’s The Roaster has a mission to promote and encourage self-identifying womxn in the coffee industry to become professional coffee roasters. It began in response to the 2016 U.S. Roaster Championships, sponsored by the Specialty Coffee Association, when all 40 entrants were men. Check out his great article about She’s The Roaster by Kim Westerman of Coffee Review.
While traveling across Colombia on a motorcycle adventure, coffee lover Natalie Van Dusen discovered the ancient art of coffee roasting from a local farmer, who showed her how to roast freshly harvested coffee beans over an open flame. At home in San Francisco, she spent the next six years experimenting with her own open-flame roasting. She decided to leave her job in tech to focus solely on coffee, and started Little Red Wagon Coffee Roasters. She eventually moved to Bozeman, Montana, which inspired the name change from LRW to Treeline Coffee Roasters. Treeline’s Geo ready-to-brew, single serve packets are the ultimate travel and outdoor companion.
The mission of the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) is to empower women in the international coffee community to achieve meaningful and sustainable lives; and to encourage and recognize the participation of women in all aspects of the coffee industry. Celebrate International Coffee Day September 29, 2019, with coffee from women.