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Crop to Cup Coffee Co is excited to announce Whole Crop, a groundbreaking new coffee project, as we expand our farmer engagement into Burundi.  This has been 2 years in the making, searching out the right farmers and the right partners to be sure that this was something that could actually happen. The project is centered in and around a washing station called Burhorwa, which is located in Muramvya Province, northeast of the capital, Bujumbura.  Both the washing station setup (2nd highest altitude station in the country, and utilizing a siphon density cherry separation system) and the surrounding region are beautiful.  But that's not why we chose to work with Buhorwa.  What makes Buhorwa ideal is the eager determination of the...
Dear Friend and Colleagues, We have launched a petition against the Anti-Homosexuality Bill introduced into the Parliament of Uganda on October 14, 2009.  For years we have been disheartened and offended by the homophobic statements and actions by the Ugandan government and even its media, and, now thanks to a radical MP, a bill that would clearly violate basic human rights has been introduced and is gaining support. The petition's website link is pasted below, and you can learn more about the issue through a simple online news search or by visiting Human Rights Watch.  If you care about this issue, PLEASE SIGN OUR PETITION HERE.  Even more, PLEASE SEND THE PETITION LINK TO AS MANY PEOPLE AS YOU CAN.  Help...
Tagged in: Origin uganda
So we're nearing the end of our trip here in Uganda.   We've been all over the coffee farms, coffee shops, washing stations, processing factories, savannas and deserts - from Kampala to Jinja to Mbale to Karamoja to Kidepo.  Tomorrow we cap off the trip with an all day bonanza at the Uganda Barista Championship.  Many of our friends are competing and we'll be there to cheer them on. Best of all, we're happy to report that - before the picking season is even finished - we've already locked in an import of two new micro-regions.  These coffees are absolutely amazing, and C2C and its partners are charting new territory in the Uganda coffee industry with the level of coffee quality and...
In case our coffee wasn't enough to get your brain moving in the morning, here's a traceability teaser to wake up your brain. We are also here to enlist YOU to help us solve this on-mountain problem related to traceability of coffee when it is sold in parchment form. After reading, please submit your ideas in the Comments section of this blog post. This scenario is based on a real situation observed just last week in the greater Mbale region of Uganda. First, allow me to introduce the two sides of the traceability argument. You are a farmer. You pick your coffee berries and have two options. One, you can carry your cherries to the nearest washing station, where you will...
Tagged in: Origin Traceability
by Alexis and Neil. Hello from Uganda! The whole Crop to Cup crew is now in tow in Mbale, with Alexis and Neil now officially known as Muzungus. We are following the energetic lead of Taylor and Jake, who are practically locals here and are ear-to-ear smiles being back on UG soil. Over the past few days, we’ve had fruitful meetings in Kampala with EAFCA (East African Fine Coffee Association) and LEAD (Livelihoods and Enterprises for Agricultural Development Program). Kampala is a bustling capital, but we jumped right into it, hopping on the back of boda bodas (motorcycle taxis) to get around town. Now on day 3, we find ourselves busy as ever in Mbale at the base of Mt. Elgon....

The trip to Burundi was a fantastic educational success, and we are excited to be working with farmers there for the next harvest (starting in April '10).

Here are a few photos to show the places we explored and the people we met along the way. Click on each photo for a larger view.

Post questions about our activities in the comments section for this post - we would love to hear from you!

Days 4-5 – Bujumbura, Ngozi and Kayanza, Burundi Let’s start off by saying that Burundi is a coffee buyer’s dream. I’ll explain later, so let me first write a bit about where I am. I arrived in the capital, Bujumbura at about 1am from Entebbe, Uganda, after a 3 hour layover at one of the world’s most uncomfortable airports, Nairobi. Driving to my hotel from the airport, I was struck by the calmness of the city. Sure, it was 1am, but having visited other East African capitals such as Entebbe/Kampala, Kigali and Nairobi, I was surprised by the lack of even late night truckers, your odd pedestrian or two, or a candle burning at a food or cigarette stall. The city...
Coffee Sourcing Trip '09 (CST) post #1, by Taylor Day 1 – NYC to Kampala, Uganda November 3, night Just arrived in Kampala, and it’s great to be back. Uganda is really where Crop to Cup started, so we hold closely our many old friends and valuable relationships we have here. Although flying in under the cover of darkness (and the lack of much light on the Entebbe-Kampala road) cuts away that rush of emotional excitement that you feel when returning to a much beloved spot, the lights of central Kampala and the warmth of good friends (Tony and Godfrey – former colleagues of mine in Bugisu and now Robusta traders - met me at the airport) made up for anything...
Uganda Coffee on Foodista
Want to catch a glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes, to get coffee from coffee farmers to your kitchens and cafes? Follow Crop to Cup's blog (here) and our twitter account to stay up to date on our trip to Uganda and Burundi this month. Taylor will first travel to Burundi, then the Crop to Cup team (Taylor and Alexis of C2C NY and Jake and Neil of C2C Chicago) will convene in Uganda. In Burundi we are building relationships with new groups of farmers by seeking out high altitude washing stations, well organized farmers and quality control processes, and working with farmers, local organizations and exporters to make Burundi a new "direct" origin for Crop to Cup, and...
Unlike wine, coffee does not get better with age. If you are keeping your coffee out, we suggest using an airtight container (ceramic or glass is best) to store your beans...