While the answer is simple, it’s a problem that The Women in Coffee Project is determined to solve.
From founders to roasters, a new generation is stepping up and taking charge. That change starts with the growers. The Women in Coffee Project knows just that. Founded in 2018 by a volunteer team at Joe Coffee Company, what began as a single event became “A platform for women who are leaders as coffee producers, importers, and exporters to offer their perspective in this complex industry.”
"We hope to encourage awareness of gender equity efforts, identify differences between equity and equality, and also create a safe space to talk about how and where we can advocate change."
That’s putting it simply. A year-round charge, this group donates 100 percent of proceeds to programming, like panel events for female leaders at origin, community outreach efforts, and this month’s tasting series. The mission, again, is deceptively simple: “Our goal is to celebrate excellent coffees produced by women! Beyond that, we hope to encourage awareness of gender equity efforts, identify differences between equity and equality, and also create a safe space to talk about how and where we can advocate change from different positions across the coffee supply chain.”
This four-part series throughout Women’s History Month culminates with Parlor Coffee’s cupping event at Brooklyn's Pulley Collective this evening. Parlor’s Operations Manager Stephanie Dana gave us a preview of what to expect: “In addition to highlighting our relationship with Maria Bercelia of Finca Los Angeles (pictured above) and a special preview of our new publication Parchment, we'll also be tasting a few samples from this season's selection from Guatemala Pulcal as well as Burundi Gaharo,” she told us.
“We'll be discussing our history with these origins and the different ways women participate towards each of the coffees at the production level. We hope to open a dialogue about access to resources, cultural differences within these farming communities, and how we as a roasting company can improve our impact.” With uplifting conversation and a cupping from 5 to 7 pm, this event certainly gives new meaning to happy hour.
There’s more where that came from — shop three great producers giving women a voice in coffee.
“We’re wholeheartedly grateful to work with Maria Bercelia (pictured above), the exemplary coffee producer of Acevedo,” Parlor says. “Maria’s unwavering focus on meticulous processing is the key to her impeccable harvests each year. This season, Los Angeles showcases buttery notes of honey, caramel, cocoa and stone fruit.”
Parlor Colombia Los Angeles ($17.65)
Founded by 12 female producers, this La Libertad community gains financial independence in managing their own funds and running an in-house bakery.
Spyhouse partners with specially selected growers to make this year-round offering. The current iteration comes from ASMUCAFE, which stands for Asociación de Mujeres Agropecuarias de Uribe, an organization of women farmers and landowners improving their families' quality of life through coffee farming.
Fifth-generation farmer Aida Batlle is an industry legend for good reason! With a commitment to sustainability and transparency, she sets out to make coffee serve all of her workers better, men and women.
— Photo Credit: Rich Gilligan and Parlor Coffee