From La Coop Coffee:
“As many of you know, Juan Luis started a coffee cooperative in his hometown of Union Cantinil, Guatemala about 15 years ago. His goal then was always to bring together the farmers as a group to help them collectively earn more for their coffee and build a better life for themselves and their families. He never gave up on that dream and that remained his goal when he started La Coop.
Last week 27 farmers (Juan’s father included) loaded up their coffee in Guatemala to send to us here in D.C. They were paid above market price for their coffee as Juan always intended when he formed the cooperative- to make sure they are not just getting by, but earning a living. Many of them came together proudly to pose for the above photo after turning in their coffee to begin its journey to us here in DC. They went out to celebrate that afternoon, filled with joy and pride to know that their hard work had paid off and that Juan never gave up on his dream of helping them build a better life for themselves and their families.
Before we opened our shop last July we had never been able to purchase coffee from more than three farmers from the cooperative at a time. But now there are 27 families in Guatemala who are living a better life today because of all of you- our loyal farmers market and popup customers who stuck with us all these years, and our new Kennedy St community who helped us grow these past 10 months.
We had no idea what to expect when we opened up in the middle of a pandemic last year, but the response from the community has far exceeded our wildest dreams. When we needed this community the most, you had our back. And for that we appreciate you all more than we can express. We are grateful for all of our wonderful customers and for our amazing staff who have greeted you all with a smile and adjusted to a rapidly changing work environment with resilience.
So next time you come in for a cup of coffee, know that it really is making a difference in someone else’s life, and it is truly helping us build community from the beginning of the value chain in Guatemala, to the end here in the Kennedy St. neighborhood of D.C.”