The Coffee Industry
Sustainability in coffee is something that the industry has only started talking about.
Sure, we’ve been talking about re-usable cups and trays and the landfill created from paper take away cups for years, and the results are easy to spot at your local cafe; Multi use and permanent replacements commonplace and are easy to find, big brands are trying to be more mindful of how they package their goods, and consumers are a lot more aware of treading lightly on the planet.
But what of the coffee itself?
Is that a sustainable industry? Worryingly, most of the time the answer is no. And a lot of the unsustainability is tied to how coffee is traded, and makes its way from the farmer, and into your hands in the form of a delicious tasty brew.
Coffee is predominately traded as a commodity, and green beans are incredibly undervalued, especially taking into account the time and dedication that coffee producers put into growing and producing specialty coffee. Where the market price is dictated by the industry’s biggest players, small specialty coffee producers are routinely paid less than the cost of production: If a customer pays upwards of $35 AUD for a kilo of coffee, but the grower only receives $4 of that, how can they be expected to have the resources to grow in their skills, pay their workers and themselves properly, and keep their business afloat? Short answer is that it’s simply not possible.
Rumble Coffee Roasters is a Melbourne based coffee roaster committed to instigating change in this matter, and being transparent about pricing data. Based in the streets of Kensington, Rumble supply cafes all over Melbourne, as well as a selection of interstate venues too. Their new espresso bar, which opened March 2021 has also been a way of showcasing their unique single origins and world class coffee.
What really sets Rumble Coffee Roasters apart, is not just their coffee; it’s the transformation that they're passionate about seeing in the specialty coffee industry. Rumble’s mission is to arm coffee lovers with the truth about what’s in their cup of coffee. That’s why for every Rumble coffee they sell, you can find detailed information about the grower and how much they were paid for each coffee, as well as how this compares to the commodity pricing.
This transparency project is a way for Rumble to live out the values of their company, and ensure that growers are able to earn a proper living wage, which fairly compensates them for the dedication, hard work and skills that goes into producing the specialty coffee that Melbourne knows and loves. Furthermore, this increasing awareness of the prices paid for specialty coffee helps to enable small coffee producers to be able to fetch reasonable prices for their coffee, in turn allowing them to further invest into their infrastructure and education.
For further information on Rumble’s transparency project, check out their 2020 Transparency Report!