Since 1999, Counter Culture has created a special coffee in celebration of the holiday season. Each year, we focus on particularly spectacular coffees, roasting and blending especially with the holiday in mind. We often use the opportunity to revive a traditional roasting technique or blending style, and to offer a glimpse into a fading coffee tradition. In the spirit of holiday giving, we also donate one dollar per every pound sold of the blend to a special cause close to our heart.
As our relationships at origin have matured and deepened, we have recognized that we are ideally positioned to contribute directly to the development of our producer partners' communities. Instead of contributing to general good works around the world, which of course would be worth our while, we ask our farmer partners directly about their needs, and then work with them to steward funds from our Holiday Blend sales to fund projects specifically designed to benefit their communities.
Recipients of Holiday Blend donations have included:
Donations from our 2012 Holiday Blend funded a two-day workshop for agronomists, technicians, washing station managers, and growers from YCFCU – and other cooperatives in the region – on organic compost and good agricultural practices, as well as supporting a pilot worm compost project in one of the member communities that can be replicated in others.
2011: Construction and support of schools in Ethiopian coffee farming communities.
2010: Organic soil-building project in Popayan, Colombia.
2009: We supported the Recinos family of Finca Nueva Armenia in planting native trees on their farm and surrounding farms in Huehuetenango, Guatemala.
2008: our donation purchased school supplies and teaching materials for the Lintong Coffee School in Lintong Nihuta, Sumatra, and benefited the communities producing our Dolok Sanggul.
2007: our partners at the 21st de Septiembre Co-op of Oaxaca, Mexico, to support education and training programs for the women of the co-op.
2006: our partners in Humure, Rwanda, where we donated 23 dairy cows to assist with community nutrition and organic fertilizer production.
2005: Coffee Kids, which connects with NGOs across Latin America to improve the quality of life for coffee-growing families
2004: Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, which supports regional farmers
2003: Grounds for Health, which screens for cancer in coffee-growing communities