Customer Spotlight: McMinnville Fire Department

Recently I was given the opportunity to visit one of our newest customers, the McMinnville Fire Department. As I walk through their halls, I am in awe of the stories I see on the walls. Heroism unites each of the pictures: people going above and beyond the call of duty, putting their lives on the line in order to save others. I can only imagine the hurt of loss and the moments of relief that are bound to fill the air I’m breathing. I’m not sure I can ever say thank you enough to the brave women and men of this fire house for their incredible service to the community. Even more amazing to me: many of these heroes are here on a voluntary basis.  

coffee, coffee subscription, giving back, mcminnvilleNot only are these wonderful people saving those in need but they’re bettering the community through helping out in a multitude of ways, most notably at this time of the year with the Toy and Joy campaign. The McMinnville Fire Dept is a collection point for this campaign whose “mission for 100 years has been to promote the spirit of helping children and families of our community during the holiday season.” 

At Caravan Coffee we are blessed and thankful to be able to be serving these wonderful people our hand crafted coffee. The community of the McMinnville Fire Department is a beacon of hope in times of severe need, so let’s raise our cup of coffee to them and acknowledge that they are worthy of our thanks!

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year everyone!

Chris McMullan, Sales and Service Rep


Caravan Coffee: 2015 Recap

New Roaster

This year we said goodbye to our old roaster, Cisco, and welcomed our new roaster Franc. Franc is also a 25lb roaster but with some added features that give us more manual control over our roast profiles.

New Roaster (20 of 24)

New Salesman

In September welcomed our new salesman Chris McMullan to the Caravan Family. Chris has been doing a great job in his first 3 months and we are excited about his future here at Caravan!

Ethiopia Trip

In February our Master Roaster Paul Allen travelled to Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee. During his trip he was able to visit the coffee mills where they process and pack the coffee. While he was there he came across two amazing coffees, Ethiopia Sidamo Peaberry and Ethiopia Abaya. This trip was a great opportunity to not only see where our coffee is grown but also see the changes happening in the lives of the people who grow it.face, girl, ethiopia, coffee

Barista Showdown

In June Caravan hosted the third annual Barista Showdown. We raised over $1000 dollars for the Newberg Area Habitat for humanity. We had baristas from all over oregon and a few from out of state compete and in the end the winner was Cole Werfelman from the South Store Cafe!

Celebrate with Us: National Fair Trade month

fair trade coffee

October is the 9th National Fair Trade Month, and with many of our coffees certified Fair Trade and all our coffees bought at better-than Fair Trade prices, we are celebrating. But what exactly is Fair Trade? The words have become buzzwords, a certification, a movement. Perhaps you, like many other coffee lovers, will only drink Fair Trade-certified coffees–and your dedication to justice is worthy of applause. Again the question: what IS Fair Trade, and why should we care?

Today, 168 million children are trapped in negative labor situations. The coffee industry is well-known to be one of the worst for child labor exploitation and sub-human working standards. The average coffee farmer barely breaks even financially, and his workers are seasonal drifters, whose children pick in the fields from dawn til dust beside them. Education is spotty or non-existant and food and shelter, especially in off-harvest seasons, are iffy.


Then, look at the life of the average coffee farmer in, say, northern Peru. Usually he has to take out a loan from the local umbrella cooperative to make it through the year until his coffee harvest comes in. Once the coffee is sold–to the lowest, quickest bidder, because he doesn’t have resiliency to wait for better prices–he makes just enough to pay his workers and pay back the loan, only to start the sordid cycle over again. He is preyed on by coyotes, or unscrupulous coffee buyers, and can’t develop the time and education needed to advocate for himself in the international coffee forum.

This is why Fair Trade coffee exists. If a coffee is certified Fair Trade, it is guaranteed to have been purchased at better-than commodity-market prices, to have been produced under fair working conditions without child or slave labor. The farmers have access to education and micro-loans, and as many middlemen as possible have been eliminated.

While Fair Trade is not the ONLY kind of buying that puts justice for the producers foremost, we are proud to roast multiple Fair Trade coffees, including the Organic Sumatra Mandheling. Thank you for joining in with the just coffee revolution!

Women in Coffee: Hannah

Continuing our promotion for Women’s Equality Day on August 26th, here is an outstanding video with Hannah Tant sharing what coffee means to her.

Hannah Tant: What Does Coffee Mean to Me?

Enjoy! And, as a quick reminder, for every pound of Peru Café Feminino coffee you purchase, we will donate $.50 to the cooperative to support the women changing their lives in Peru. Click through now!


Women in Coffee: Maricela of Peru

Meet Maricela, who has farmed for over sixty years and owns twenty-eight hectares of land, twelve of which are planted in coffee. Our staff writer, Emily McIntyre, had the chance to meet her in Peru this spring. She is not a member of the Peruvian Café Feminino foundation, but a stellar example of the kind of woman we support and want to enable toward equality through our coffee purchases. You can partner with us: when you purchase our Peru Feminino coffee anytime in the month of August, we will give $.50 a pound to the foundation.

A basket for picking coffee at Maricela’s farm

Hands that show the years of love for her coffee

The fermentation tank on Maricela’s farm

Women in Coffee: Mica Villasenor

Hello, August! In this sticky month, we are celebrating Women’s Equality Day on the 26th with a series of videos from the women who work at Caravan sharing what coffee means to them. We’ll also feature a blog post about a spunky woman farmer from Peru, and will be highlighting our Peru Feminino coffee by giving $.50 for every pound of coffee to the Cafe Feminino Foundation.

Let’s get started! Meet Mica, the Assistant Roaster at Caravan Coffee!