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Coffee Drinkers at work...take note


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I don't know how you folks work things, but in my office those of us who drink coffee pitch in $10 a month towards coffee, sugar and cream. It seemed odd to me that we work for an international development NGO and we were drinking Folger's so I lobbied the fellow drinkers to switch to Fair trade. While it is considerably more expensive than a huge tin of folger's, it tastes much better and you can use less grinds to make a pot. More importantly you are ensuring that coffee growers are receiving a fair wage for their work, and you're supporting a product that, at least with Bridgehead and probably most others, is grown using the less intensive shade growing method...and organically at that. I realize that this may be extreme for some, but you might also opt for Fair Trade Sugar. You can buy it at 10 000 villages and likely elsewhere.

By no means am I confining this to the workplace, it's jsut thatif you have a beverage club and you can switch them over to fair trade you should try to do so.

More info on fair trade coffee here:


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Good to see some coffee talk happening here. Way to take initiative ahess648! Yeah Bridgehead! Boo folgers, juan valdez, and maxwell house. (or even second cup, starbucks and timothy's!) There is a coffee crisis happening right now...no not a shortage but an oversaturation. There are thousands of people in coffee growing countries starving and bankrupt because the market coffee prices are so low...and have you noticed your coffee prices going down? Anyways, at bridgehead for example, farmers are paid fair wages, we buy the coffee from small scale farmers (not big plantations) and it is also shade grown (no clearcutting) and organic (farmers don't become sick from using harmful pesticides) So basically I encourage all you coffee drinkers to think beyond the cup and think of where your morning (and/or daytime) coffee is coming from and who is suffering because of it. There are 3 bridghead coffee shops in Ottawa

bank and 3rd (across from starbucks)

bank and gilmour (near barrymore's)

richmond (near churchill - beside MEC)

and one in Montreal on L'acadie (attached to the new MEC)

So if you get the chance please come and check them out. There are also a bunch of places to get fair trade beans etc... (most health food stores have them) Just something to think about. Thanks!

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I had Oso negro at a coffee shop (it was a blendz if you can believe it), and I remember the name because it was quite good. Apparently, Blue Mountain Coffee from jamaica is the best coffee in the world, too bad it's like $60 a pound.

Another thing I admire about Bridgehead, and something I've been meaning to look into: reusable spoons for stirring your coffee. The second cup near me when I lived in Guelph used to do this and phased it out. Now it seems that Bridgehead is about the only place doing this instead of offering stirsticks. Anybody have the inside track? Is it sanitary reasoning? lack of a dishwasher (the second cup had one, so why did they get rid of the spoons?).

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My coffee story:

In 2001, a friend, his wife, and I went to Jamaica; we stayed at an all-inclusive resort in Ocho Rios.

My friend spent a bunch of his formative (grade-school era) years in Jamaica, and has relatives there (whom we visited) and back in Toronto, a lot of whom were from Jamaica.

As such, my buddy was tasked with bringing back coffee. He brought down a suitcase within a suitcase, got in contact with a wholesaler, and purchased 60 (yes, sixty) pounds of Jamaican High Mountain coffee beans, which is second best to (and cheaper than) Blue Mountain. (I bought three pounds of Blue Mountain beans.)

We got back to Pearson airport about midnight. The three of us stood at the baggage carousel, and waited. My bag came through before theirs all had, so I volunteered to get in line for a cab while they waited.

I got in the cab line and waited for them. And waited. And waited. About half an hour later, they came through.

It seems that the bag with the coffee was the last one to come through, minutes after all the others. As they reached for it, several large gentlemen dressed in black came up and said, "We want to talk to you..."

Apparantly the drug-sniffin' dogs went apeshit when the coffee bag came off the plane. See, drug smugglers think they can fool the dogs by hiding the drugs in something with a stronger smell, like coffee, but all they do is train the dogs to sniff for coffee as well as the drugs*.

The coffee was in the form of 12 five-pound vacuum-sealed bags, some of which had been opened and their contents examined. We spent time the next morning dumping coffee beans out of the suitcase.


Brad, Who Had Blue Mountain Espresso In Barcelona, But Doesn't Brag About It...Much

* Note that my much smaller amount of coffee seems to have gotten through easily...

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