About Apostle Coffee
When we founded Apostle Coffee in 2016 our ambition was to produce the very finest organic coffee, but without the excessive environmental costs that are associated with the industry.
We’ve gone on to meet that challenge and can proudly say that we are an award-winning family roastery, that is carbon negative, with 100% compostable packaging and a traceable coffee supply that is commitment to sustainable practices, regenerative agriculture and improving the environment.
Apostle Coffee is…
Apostle Coffee operates from a converted stable, just a stone’s throw from the small hamlet of Middlehope, where the family have lived for over twenty years.
Organic, Sustainable & Fairtrade
We source our coffee from farmers who uphold organic and sustainable practices, where fair prices are guaranteed.
Apostle partners with coffee farms whose practices are regenerative and sustainable; working only with producers who are committed to following organic and bio-diverse farming practices, who are actively educating and empowering their workforces and are continuing to reduce their own environmental impact through reforestation projects, improved irrigation and more efficient transportation.
We ensure that the prices being paid to our coffee producers are well above local market rates, with these amounts often being above the Fairtrade standard.
Carbon Neutral & Compostable
Our roastery is ‘off grid’, powered by wind, solar and natural gas and we ‘inset’ our carbon footprint by planting endangered Black Poplar trees. Plus all of our packaging and labelling is 100% compostable.
Our saintly principles at Apostle would count for little if we didn’t also produce fantastic tasting coffee, and our Great Taste Award from the Guild of Fine Food is testament to this high standard. By focusing on a dedicated range of coffees we are able to hone and perfect each one to ensure that every box of Apostle Coffee is bursting with flavour and character.
Ultimately we base all of our operations around three key aims
- Investing in sustainable communities
- Investing in regenerative agriculture
- Investing in improving our environment
And how do we this?
- By buying coffee beans from growers who follow organic practices.
- By roasting our beans with renewable energy.
- By off-setting our carbon footprint by planting native trees.
- By using 100% compostable packaging.
- By being “plastic-free”.
- By supporting rural coffee producers through initiatives that empower the workforce.
Where is our coffee from?
We source our green coffee from wholesalers who uphold the very highest standards and ensure that fair prices are paid to the farmers and producers.
Where our products are detailed as organic, these green beans have received the necessary certification within their country of origin. In some instances our coffee does not have official accreditation, as this is sometimes impossible for smaller farms - instead we check with our wholesalers to ensure that organic practices are being implemented by these producers and, despite the lack of official accreditation, they are producing coffee that stands up to organic guidelines.
Apostle Coffee does not produce Fairtrade products, but where possible we source green beans that are Fairtrade certified. When this is not possible we guarantee, via our wholesale partners, that the prices being paid to the coffee producers are well above local market rates - rates that are often higher than the Fairtrade standard.
The Devil’s Chair - Organic Espresso Blend
Our espresso blend is a careful mix of three Colombian beans, sourced through La Cooperativa del Sur del Cauca (COSURCA) - an organic-certified producers’ cooperative and FAF partner, which offers financial support, processing and export services, and technical trainings on good agricultural practices to 1,400 families in the southern Cauca region.
COSURCA’s support is holistic – aiming not only to generate economic opportunity for its members, but also to advocate for peace and to act as an educational platform for its members on issues related to health, food security and protecting local ecosystems.
Through the ECAS model, the coffee producers themselves assume leadership roles based on their expertise in managing resources such as seeds, soil, water and medicinal herbs. With the help of a local expert in sustainable agriculture, this knowledge is then consolidated and shared with the rest of the community in the form of practical trainings on topics ranging from irrigation and drainage to organic fertilizers and biodiversity. In doing so, COSURCA stresses the importance of preserving not only local ecosystems, but also local culture, history and knowledge.
To date, FAF’s TA support has helped COSURCA to train over 800 smallholder farmers on sustainable farming practices and to establish 11 ECAS community schools throughout the Cauca region.
The Colombian farmers we source from include:
Pedro William Mecizo, Balboa, Cauca. Pedro grows coffee on his 3 ha parcel in the Vereda of Puentetierra, situated in Balboa, Cauca. On the farm the 10 year old coffee trees are grown under the shade of citrus trees and banana trees.
Aurelio Ortega, Argelia, Cauca. Aurelio has been growing coffee for 18 years in Argelia using organic practices on his farm. During this time he is continued to look at ways to improve the cultivation of his crop. In recent years he has made extra effort to help improve the coffee quality by addressing the full cycle of his practices from cultivation through to processing. On the farm there are also a number of shade trees including avocado, orange, guamo and pineapple to help provide a stable environment for the coffee to grow.
Yenny Ruano, Balboa, Cauca. Yenny has cultivated and grown coffee for the past 8 years and has been a member of the ASPROBALBOA group since it began. He helped to initiate the production of coffee and processing on the farms in small beneficios. He now helps Cosurca as well with teaching and education of producers to help improve their practises and quality of coffee.
Ippikin’s Rock - Organic Single Origin
Profile: Tasting notes of Apple, Plum and Hazelnut Chocolate.
Altitude: 1800 - 2300
Cup Score: 84
Varietal: Caturra & Typica, Bourbon, Pache
This delicate organic coffee is from COCLA – a Peruvian co-operative that has been working for 44 years to support Peruvian agriculture in line with its social and service-oriented mission.
COCLA began its first activities in 1967, when seven coffee grower co-operatives based in the Peruvian province of La Convenciуn and in the district of Yanatile came together with other small coffee growers and saw the need to merge their work to start a second-tier co-operative organisation.
Initially COCLA offered only storage services, coffee processing, coffee marketing and an accounting service, but today this has grown to include the production of tea, cocoa honey, beans and soya.
With social initiatives at their core, COCLA founded a centre in 2006 that provides women with social services (Casa Comunitaria de Servicios Sociales). The centre cares for women subject to psychological and sexual violence and includes a health centre (Centro de salud Santa Ana), a women’s emergency centre (Centro de Emergencia de la Mujer), and a consulting service for reproductive and sexual health for teenagers and young people.
Gender equality is also a major consideration of COCLA. It promoted the development of a new organisation in the board of directors, dealing with the integration of women and their families in the co-operative. The new committee, known as Comités de Desarrollo de la Mujer (Womens Development Committee), identifies areas of weakness and develops training programmes to promote gender equality and to empower women in carrying out their work.
The Needle’s Eye - Sparkling Water Decaf
Our delicate sparkling water decaf is produced by a non-profit organisation called Rebuild Woman’s Hope.
This natural decaffeination process uses carbonated water to draw out the caffeine molecules and results in a flavourful coffee without the kick. Although this process uses naturally occurring elements (water and CO2) it does mean that the final coffee can no longer be considered organic.
Established in 2013 by gender equity pioneer Marceline Budza, RWH is a non-profit organisation that is empowering Congolese women by developing entrepreneurship and economic empowerment through coffee farming via the training of its RWH’s members. The DRC is still one of the poorest countries in the world and recovering from 20 years of war. On top of this, it is considered one of the most dangerous place in the world to be a woman.
In 2015, several coffee exporters teamed up with SHIFT (Social Impact Solutions) and RWH in order to leverage the potential that coffee has in creating economic opportunities for female smallholders on Lake Idjwi. Together, the partners have provided members of RWH with the tools and the know-how to take control of their economic future by integrating them into the coffee chain. The program has included building two washing stations on Idjwi Island - where our Rebuild Women’s Hope coffees are processed - and entrepreneurship and economic empowerment training for RWH’s members.
Idjwi Island is situated on Lake Kivu, lying between Rwanda and mainland DRC. Up until very recently, the coffee produced on Idjwi had no export market. Often, this meant it was sold to middlemen who would smuggle it across the water in boats into neighbouring countries for resale. Even with optimal conditions for coffee cultivation - (fertile soils and altitudes of 2,000 meters) - the quality of production has suffered due to lack of markets, agronomy training, and finance.
Thanks to initiatives like RWH they are now farming using the best agronomic practices, quality-focussed processing, protocols & infrastructure. This has seen the group’s coffees break into the specialty market, where it attracts price premiums that have a huge benefit on the livelihoods of its farmers. Today, RWH has expanded to 1,800 members growing high-quality coffee and the program continues to build a spirit of entrepreneurship among the women on Idjwi Island.
The close collaboration has allowed RWH and its members to realise their dream of rebuilding hope and dignity among women coffee farmers in the DRC.