Just like the past year, our delicious new Noël Blend is a tale of two halves. We’ve combined a nutty Mexican coffee and a Rwandan coffee with notes of jammy blackberries and biscuit, to create a moreish, festive blend. £1 from each bag we sell will be donated to Working Chance, the only UK charity dedicated to supporting women with convictions to find work.
Noël Blend is brought to you by Rogiciano Lopez of the Union San Pedro cooperative, and the producers of the Gisheke Washed Station. Both of these coffees have been sourced through Raw Material, who reinvest all profits beyond their operational costs back into the communities from which the coffees come.
Oaxaca is one of the poorest states in Mexico, and over the last decade coffee production yields there have become dangerously low as a result of coffee leaf rust and the lack of financial means to tackle it. Most producers here are smallholders with less than one hectare of land, and as a result, the future of coffee production looks dire. Union San Pedro represents 180 producer families from eight communities in the region, and has built demonstrative fields, alternate cash crops and employment programs for young people as an alternative to urban migration, providing a strong model for other producer associations.
Gisheke Washing Station is one we have worked with before and are starting to build an ongoing relationship with – you may recognise the washed Gisheke as the top component of our Aylesbury Blend. The lot in this Noël Blend is instead processed naturally, providing the much more pronounced fruit notes and boozy sweetness. Gisheke’s geographic location makes it ideal for the processing and drying of naturally processed lots, due to the consistent wind flow that moves between two steep hills that lead towards Lake Kivu, Idjwi Island and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The station is only accessible by water, and all coffee cherry processed here is delivered by boat.