Why a Coffee Bar?

After oil, coffee is the 2nd most widely traded product in the world. Its impact on human cultures and the natural environment extends literally around the world. Every cup of coffee we buy and drink connects us with a web a hidden stories.

It takes hundreds of people to get each bean from plant to cup. The leading producers of coffee are developing countries in Latin American, Africa and Asia. A major source of income, coffee is critical to their economies. Yet, less than 15% of the revenues end up in their hands. The United States consumes over 18 million 60 kg bags of coffee per year.  We have the potential to change the circumstances for developing counties – getting more revenue directly into the hands of the communities that grow and harvest the coffee beans. Our choices as consumers make a real difference in their lives.

Organic, shade-grown coffee is emphasized for its environmental benefits over sun-grown coffee that requires more chemical pesticides and clear-cutting of forests. Shade-grown coffee also helps to protect wildlife, like North American birds while wintering in South America, chimpanzees near the Gombe reserve and tigers in southern India.

Coffee bars serve as “third place” where people go to get away from home or work and feel comfortable and connected with their neighbors. Historically, coffeehouses have been known for their political conversations. In the 1700s, coffeehouses were linked to the Boston Tea Party and the French Revolution. In the mid-1900s, coffeehouses were venues for convention-challenging art. Today, a coffee bar helps to connect those who live in an individualistic society. Neighbors who would not meet otherwise can become friends over a freshly brewed cup.

When Overflow Coffee Bar opens, South Loopers can change the situation for coffee farmers around the world, save the environment, and become friends with other South Loopers.  At Overflow Coffee Bar we will change the world one cup at a time.

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