This post originally appeared in the Starbucks Newsroom. ECI is incredibly proud to see coffee from Congo come to 1700 Starbucks stores (and online) this summer!
By Heidi Peiper / Starbucks Newsroom
When green coffee arrives in burlap bags each day for roasting at the Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Seattle, they have already traveled thousands of miles over land and sea. Each journey is unique, but perhaps none quite as extraordinary as Starbucks’ latest small-lot coffee from the eastern region of Democratic Republic of Congo.
DRC has some of the most fertile land in the world and was once a prolific coffee producer. But market access disappeared through decades of war and turmoil, halting a thriving coffee industry and leaving farmers with no infrastructure to produce and sell coffee. After a peace deal with rebel groups was signed in 2013, stability is growing in the once fragile area and determined smallholder farmers have banded into co-ops to build the trade. Lake Kivu, a massive freshwater lake along the Rwandan border, provides a natural ecosystem well-suited to the cultivation of heirloom Bourbon coffee trees. Read more at Starbucks Newsroom!
Watch the video below to learn more about how ECI is supporting the reemerging Congolese coffee sector!