We welcome you to read this story of my recent experience to chat with the amazing folks that roast and source this amazing coffee for I AM HERD
She poured me a cup of coffee into a homemade mug that I selected off the shelf. The café bustled with folks coming and going. As each person came in the door, you would think she has just spotted her best friend from many years back. Hugs and smiles and warmth was all that could be felt.
I waited patiently, soaking in the atmosphere, until it quieted down enough that we could sneak in our interview. I had asked Ms. Tammy if I could ask her a few questions about their coffee, as we would soon be purchasing from her in bulk, to sell and help support the non-profit Mustang Sanctuary, I AM HERD.
I knew we could not go with just any coffee. Our family are passionate coffee connoisseurs … we are not picky about much, but when it comes to coffee – well we truly savor the highest vibrational brew one can find. We knew we had found that in this place. We have been buying coffee here for years, but still – I wanted to learn more about where this coffee comes from before we started offering it to our supporters.
I remembered a few years back, we had come into this café and Ms. Tammy’s husband, Mr, Juan told us that the ‘Woman’s Coffee’ was the cup of the day. He laughed as he told us of a gentleman that has just ordered and said that Nooo he did not want that ‘Woman’s Coffee” ... if it was for women. Mr. Juan had told us then, that the “Woman’s Coffee” was not called that because it was for only women to drink, but rather because it was coffee sourced from woman owned farms in Guatamala. He went on to tell us how that protected the women, for them to be the owner of the business was a way to help them stay safe. Well, this intrigued me and I wanted to know more. I knew I wanted our coffee to be this ‘Woman’s Coffee’ but I also knew I wanted to know more about what this really meant.
So, as I sipped the most glorious dark roasted brew from my handmade mug, I asked Ms. Tammy to explain more about what this “Woman’s Coffee” is and what it’s all about? In the most beautiful Argentina accent, so rich and full of heart, I let myself just melt into her words. She explained to me that the concept started in Guatemala, but has now spread to other South American countries and that it was a wonderful thing. She explained that due to extreme violence within their countries, families are often separated and women are left on their own … basically they are abandoned in a way and left to care for their children alone, their husbands far away. Ms. Tammy hesitated and said – You know, these women, they make really good – prey.
A chill trickled down my spine and she continued on - telling me a story that at first seemed unrelated. …
She said, you know we used to live in California. And there were places in California where the Native Americans had set up their own space, separate from the government. There would often be casinos, but what they were doing was funding support for their people. The earned money, they took care of their neighborhoods and they sent their children off to college. On full scholarships they would give them, pay for their tuition, their meals, their lodging – everything. These Native Americans are taking care of their own, taking it upon themselves to do this. The government was not doing it for them – so they are doing it.
She then shifted back to the women – she said This is what these women are doing. These women coffee farmers are standing up and taking control of their lives. They are creating their own income and when a friend needs a roof put on their house, these women are funding it. They are standing up and taking care of their own. Their government is not doing it for them, but they are doing it for themselves.
This is why Mr. Juan calls it the “Woman’s Coffee” .. it really is just that.
She looked at me and said – “You know, this is about so much more than coffee.”
As her words sank in, I somehow knew – just how very little I did know about this entire country that is south of ours on the map. But somehow, to sit beside this woman, so rich in her own heritage and culture, to hear her share such meaningful stories of how this coffee was supporting a whole new way of life, empowering a whole culture of people, enabling them to create a better way for themselves. And all I had to do was buy my coffee from them to support all of that? It seemed secondary that the coffee was in fact so very good, that was just icing on the cake.
This was truly about so much more than just coffee.
I asked if I could buy a back of each roast, the dark, medium and blonde and she brought the beans out – showing me the little place where the ‘caffeine’ was at, in the little crack of the bean. Mr. Juan had roasted it just that morning, in a small building across the street. The smell was better than any perfume, that deep, rich smell of freshly roasted coffee beans. Mr. Juan said that the ‘Woman’s Coffee’ was so much better than the others, because the women are just so careful. You never see little rocks or stones in the beans that come from them, not like you’ll see in the others. He laughed as he said, the men, they are not nearly as careful, but the women, they are, they are very careful and the coffee beans, they are always good.
So this coffee, not only is it certified organic, certified fair trade and single origin. (You may select Single Origin Guatemala or Single Origin Sumatra) It is all grown by woman owned farms, and sourced by this amazing family that roasts the coffee themselves with such love and mindfulness. Every ounce of their little café, Folks Café, is sprinkled with efforts to be more mindful. From paper straws to real coffee cups that hang on the wall. Mr. Juan pointing around to it all, as he tells me, I do not do this for me… He sprinkles his fingers towards to sky to simulate his spirit leaving one day, his eyes sparkle and he says no – I do it for them, and he points to my three daughters sitting at the booth, enjoying their milk shakes he gifted them on the house. He smiles and winks and all I can think of is how amazing it is to share a world with the likes of these people. Truly a gift to all, they are.
Yes, oh yes. This is so much more than the coffee.
So, really I just do not know if this can get any better. To have these amazing people roasting this amazing coffee especially for I AM HERD to sell and support our Mustangs and Mission. And to know just how far reaching the impact of one little purchase of coffee beans has on the lives of so many. It humbles me and reminds me of just how small I truly am, and just how much power I truly have through my choices of where I buy my next beans, freshly ground.
So our newly released ‘Just Be Coffee’ is especially prepared by this amazing family Mr. Juan and Ms. Tammy that own Folks Café in Wilmington, NC. We will take orders and then fill them fresh from the small batches they roast in dark, medium and blonde blends – all sourced from the certified Organic, Fair Trade Women Owned farms that they are connected with. Whole beans or ground options are available. Sold in 12 ounce bags and mailed right to you door. Might we suggest throwing away your plastic coffee maker or Keurig – this coffee deserved a French Press or better yet a simple Pour Over, using un-bleached filters as well. Every little detail matters when you are talking about coffee of this kind of refined vibration.
Just Be Coffee Small Batch Roasted for I AM HERD Mustang Sanctuary by Folks Café