The Village

$23.00

Geranium, orange sherbet, apricot compote

Clear

When it comes to producing exceptional coffee, it truly takes a village. Women are a tremendously influential part of the global coffee community, making up 70% of the labor in field work and harvesting—detail-oriented roles which ultimately translate to excellence in the cup. However, women face steep challenges when it comes to equitable access to career growth, land, education, and credit, representing just 20-30% of farm ownership.

The Village is a celebration of women in coffee, composed of seasonally-rotating selections from valued relationships with female producers and cooperatives, aimed at highlighting and addressing this gender gap. According to strong research, investing in women increases the sustainability of coffee everywhere—women are more likely to reinvest their income back into their families, their coffee businesses, and their communities. And when access to decision-making and the global marketplace improves for women farmers, quality improves too.

Currently, The Village comes from a Kenyan cooperative in the Nandi Hills called Kapkiyai Farmers Cooperative Society Women’s Group. Expect a complex balance of balanced acidity and layers of sweetness. This coffee has a really unique blend of soft, sweet florals and dried fruit (think golden raisin) upfront. As the cup cools, toothier flavors such as milk chocolate, dried peach, and marzipan come through. Complementary botanicals alongside caramel and fruit-driven sweetness make this a truly exceptional cup of coffee!

  • Type

    Single Origin
  • Origin

    Nandi Hills, Rift Valley, Kenya
  • Producer

    Kapkiyai Farmers Cooperative Society Women's Group
  • Variety

    SL28, Ruiru 11, SL34, Batian, K7
  • Elevation

    2000-2230 MASL
  • Process

    Washed

Meet the Women of Kapkiyai

This coffee comes to us through our partnership with Vava Angwenyi of Vava Coffee, a vertically integrated export and social benefit company. Until a few years ago, women only existed in the periphery of the Kapkiyai Farmers Cooperative. Although they played essential roles to coffee production, such as picking ripe cherries and carrying the loads down the hills after harvest, men owned the coffee trees, decision-making process, and the profits reaped from their production. However, in 2010, Kapkiyai began receiving support from the Coffee Initiative, and the training in both agronomy and the management of the cooperative and wet mill emphasized gender inclusion.

Illustration of Kenya
Eventually, the cooperative passed the Kapkiyai Women in Coffee Resolution, granting women the right to become full contributing members in the cooperative. Following the decision, a number of husbands gave their wives a segment of their own trees. Today, 106 of the 398 members of the Kapkiyai Farmers Cooperative Society are women.

It Takes a Village

Women produced 55,000 kilograms of the 200,114 total cherry produced by Kapkiyai in 2015, a contribution that played a significant role in helping the cooperative purchase an eco-pulper, a new pulping machine that processes 1,500 kilograms of coffee cherry per hour. “Without women, we would not have this machine,” said Chairman Saina. Women have also made inroads into the cooperative’s decision-making process by rising into leadership positions. Dorcas Jeptanui is both the chairlady of the Women in Coffee group and a member of the cooperative’s management committee.

A woman producer from the Kapkiyai Womens Cooperative smiles and looks off camera A depulping machine sits underneath an open shed at the Kapkiyai Cooperative

Meet the Artist Behind The Village

As a product that features seasonally rotating coffees from valued relationships with female producers, we hoped to reflect the diversity of stories and perspectives as well as origins in the label artwork. To do so, we had the privilege of working with the incredible Costa Rica-based illustrator, Erica Zeledón Salazar to bring the concept to life. We were drawn to her use of vibrant colors and texture, as well as how she uses symbolic elements to connect her ideas to the natural world.

We had a chance to speak to Erica about what inspires her work, and specifically the design for The Village.

Erica Zeledon Salazar
"Nature has the ability to be a source of constant creation and transmutation—in it, we can find such microscopic elements that are difficult to see with the naked eye, as well as large bodies that make you feel so small—each and every one of them essential and important in the cycles of life. At the end of the day, everything is connected and those connections are what catch my attention completely."
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