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Posted by dmhughes at about 9am on Wednesday May 15, 2013
"The new relationship between Just Coffee and Ancora is more of "an alliance," says Earley, that lets both companies -- which remain separate -- do what they do best. Just Coffee, having outgrown its digs at 1129 E. Wilson St. on the near east side, needed a bigger roasting facility. Ancora, with a large roasting facility at 3701 Orin Rd. (just off Stoughton Road near Madison College-Truax), was "not roasting enough to justify that space," says Earley.
So the two are combining their roasting operations in the Orin Road space, which will allow Just Coffee to produce three times the volume it can currently. Ancora's beans will come from Just Coffee -- all fair trade and organic, from Just Coffee's grower-partners -- making Ancora Just Coffee's biggest customer. And Ancora's master roaster, Casey Blanche, will go over to the Just Coffee side.
Bottom line: "They don't own us and we don't own them," Earley affirms.
"Our strength is wholesale; Ancora's roots are in the cafe," says Earley. By shifting roasting responsibilities to Just Coffee, Ancora will be able to concentrate on expanding its retail and cafe spaces.
Earley believes the Orin Road site will be the only coffee roasting facility in the Midwest with both a drum roaster (Ancora's equipment) and an air roaster (Just Coffee's method). And Just Coffee is investing in a new air roaster that will use 80% less gas and emit 80% less particulate into the atmosphere, says Earley. The roasts specific to Ancora will continue to be produced with the drum; Just Coffee's will continue to be produced with the air roaster.
There are no plans to have Just Coffee roasts or signage in the Ancora cafes. There are no plans for a Just Coffee cafe. The bicycle deliveries that helped make Just Coffee's reputation will continue from its new base, even though it's much further east. "The delivery guys will have to plan out their routes more carefully because they won't be able to go back and forth so much," says Earley.
The company's mission, trading fairly and transparently with small farming cooperatives in Latin America and Africa, "will never change," says Earley. "It's why we do what we do."
Posted by Caitlin at about 12pm on Wednesday May 8, 2013
“The first step - especially for young people with energy and drive and talent, but
not money - the first step to controlling your world is to control your culture. To
model and demonstrate the kind of world you demand to live in. To write the books.
Make the music. Shoot the films. Paint the art.”-Chuck Palahniuk
Madison, Wisconsin is known for being a culturally rich city. We’ve held various
titles over the years including but not limited to healthiest, best and sportiest.
We are familiar with our attributes which includes our intellectual prowess,
high concentration of restaurants and yoga studios for the size of our city and
our accessibility to healthy lifestyle through the use of our many bike paths and
numerous marathons, bike races, triathlons and more. Yet, how often do we talk
about coffee culture in our beloved city that so highly values quality and conscious
consumerism? We have a ridiculous amount of cafes in this city, but how do they
embody coffee culture? How does our coffee culture compare to coffee culture in
Posted by Julia Baumgartner at about 3pm on Monday May 9, 2011
This past week two representatives from La FEM in Nicaragua joined us for a week long visit in Madison to participate in several exchanges around town. Juanita Villareyna, co-director of La FEM and Irma Lopez, coffee farmer and member of COMUTRADI women's cooperative met with UW Madison students and professors, Willy Street Coop members, WCCN (and their lenders), Wisconsin farmers, Mermaid cafe, coffee consumers and Just Coffee Coop, among others for what proved to be an enriching week getting to know the people and places at the opposite end of the coffee chain. Once again, producers and consumers came together to discuss why these relationships are about much more than Just Coffee. Just before their departure, Juanita and Irma reflected on their visit in this interview: