Going to university I learned a lot of things about corporate business relations (yuck). During these lectures we learned a lot about this way and that way of doing business, often high tech, inpersonal and baised on profitability. It seemed as if you had to present oneself in a certain manner, behave in a certain way and eventually you would get the ultimate reward. Heres the thing, that’s not me.
Javier Gutierrez | Coffee Supplier | Glasgow
When I began dreaming about my own coffee business all I could see was great coffee, ethical trade, well paid farmers and transparency down the entire chain. I wanted natural relationships with honorable companies. So when I attened a coffee cupping in Glasgow and began talking to Javier, a coffee supplier from Guatemala who grew up surrounded by the coffee industry it was as if the universe had given us our rout to making Canary Girl a reality.
Javier was setting up his company Caribbean Goods which brought the best Guatemalan coffees to Glasgow, the city he has fallen in love with. He was my age, passionate and a fellow start up so obviously we kept in contact. His schedule for beans arriving aligned with my ability to have a roastery ready and the plan was on. I can honestly say that without his co-operation there wouldn’t be a Canary Girl Coffee.
Bootstrapping my company there was no way I could afford the usual 65kg bags of green coffee, or the $300 pallet shipping fee which most suppliers offer. Caribbean Goods offered 30kg bags and Javier let me pop by his lock up before he officially opened, not to mention he pays the farmers well above the “fairtrade” price for their coffee! I am so excited to continue to work with Javier and help spread his delicious Guatemalan coffees across the land! It is a business relationship which was formed naturally and thanks to not seeking out corporate solutions to soursing coffee, I am only one degree of separation from the people who farm, pick and process the coffee I roast.
Heres to putting people back at the heart of business.