Breaking news. Moyee Coffee has been named at Radical Innovator of 2014 in the Netherlands! This is special – really special. You could say that Vrij Nederland’s Radical Innovators is to the Dutch what Time magazine’s People of the Year is to, well, everyone else.
Every year Dutch quality magazine Vrij Nederland creates a list of Holland’s most radical innovators – the companies attempting and succeeding at making great things happen. This year 14 companies across all sectors received the honor, all special in their own right. Click here for the entire article in Dutch. For everyone else, we translated
The Conscious: FairChain Coffee
By Evert Nieuwenhuis
Moyee Coffee is roasted in Ethiopia, and that’s what makes is radically different than all other Fairtrade products.
Fairtrade is great, says Guido van Staveren van Dijk, but you’ll have to wait a very long time before it makes a poor country rich. Van Staveren van Dijk is the founder of Moyee Coffee, what he claims is the world’s first FairChain coffee.
FairChain goes farther than Fairtrade. Van Staveren van Dijk: “Fair trade is focused on raw materials, like coffee beans. We’re focused on the entire chain: from beans to roasting and sales. That’s where the real money is made, and it’s why we are able to make a real difference.”
Moyee Coffee is roasted in Ethiopia, and that’s what makes is radically different than all other Fairtrade products. “Ethiopia exports 99% of its beans unprocessed. In a good year, that generates 800 million euros for the country. A roasted coffee bean is almost four times more valuable. In other words: if Ethiopia would export roasted beans, they would be able to earn about 3 billion euros – that’s more than they receive for development aid.”
Van Staveren van Dijk is anything but a typical philanthropist. He is a young entrepreneur with a “corporate career”. He was educated as an economist at various universities included the University of Chicago, the crux of neoliberalism. “I more or less stumbled upon a website that published coffee world statistics. I was perplexed: how is it possible that the price of coffee has risen 200% in the last decade while the price paid to farmers has declined? Where is all that money going? If Nestlé and Clooney can get rich on coffee, so can my Ethiopian partners and I. The coffee world needed to be turned atop its head.
The Conscious Meter
Nonetheless, the Ethiopian-Dutch Moyee wants to improve the world, beginning in Ethiopia. The coffee farmer receives a premium above the local market price. Moyee’s profits are channeled for the most part to projects and companies that can help further develop the FairChain mindset. “But most of all we want to show that poor countries that export raw materials are more than capable of processing their products. The are entitled to an honest place in the production chain. The largest share of the added value doesn’t have to only go into the pockets of foreign companies.” And if it works with coffee, it can work with peanut butter and chocolate.
How does Moyee taste?
Moyee wants to sell high-quality coffee, so-called single state coffee, which is as different from mass coffee as Mouton Rothschild is from Hema house wine. And they’ve succeeded: the taste of Myee is more layered and more nuanced than Illy and Lavaza’s more expensive beans. Try it for yourself at moyeecoffee.com