The wish list for our perfect bean included the following; organic, fair trade, shade-grown, and family farmed. That's a tall order, but we figured conservation at these levels had to exist... right?
Organic beans are not terribly hard to find, which is great. Organic is exactly where we started our research. There were a number of providers of organic coffee but one, in particular, stood out from the rest. A company called Birds & Beans Coffee.
Birds & Beans Coffee hit all the marks. They provided organic coffee, fair trade certification and emphasized shade-grown coffee. They even worked with family-run coffee farms and paid their farmers top price which supported the families who continue to grow coffee in a sustainable way.
The icing on the cake for us was their Smithsonian Bird Friendly® shade-grown organic coffee seal of approval. This means they are able to meet one of the industries toughest standards - bird and ecological conservation of the highest order.
Bird Friendly® certified coffees are recognizable by the emblematic gold seal representing the gold standard in habitat conservation. Here's how the Smithsonian describes the practice of bird-friendly coffee production.
Three-quarters of the world's coffee farms destroy forest habitat to grow coffee in the sun and typically use harmful pesticides and fertilizers that poison the environment. When forests disappear, migratory songbirds disappear, too. In order to combat critical population and habitat loss, Smithsonian scientists created the Bird Friendly certification.
Bird Friendly certified coffees grow under biodiverse shade that provides habitat for migratory songbirds and other wildlife, sequesters carbon and fights climate change. Certification standards cover everything from canopy height to insect biodiversity to protect the wildlife that lives where coffee is grown. Bird Friendly® coffees are also certified organic, meaning they are grown without pesticides, which is better for people and for the planet.
Needless to say, we were more than thrilled to approach Birds & Beans for an opportunity to represent their brand at Herb & Coffee Legends. We are working now to bring you this amazing coffee in a variety of roasts. If you would like to be notified when it will be available for purchase, be sure to sign up for our newsletter.
To close us out I would like to share a thought by Henry David Thoreau who wrote of an enchanting encounter with the Wood Thrush:
"This is the only bird whose note affects me like music. It lifts and exhilarates me. It is inspiring. It changes all hours to an eternal morning."
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