Who is Chipp Coffee Co.?

Hey there hot stuff!

You might be reading this trying to figure out who on earth this Chipp Coffee, or what Leo is?

Well, settle in, we're going to take a quick dive into who and what Chipp Coffee Co. is!

Firstly, hi! My name is Zach, and I run Chipp Coffee Co.
To give you a brief intro to how this company came about, I'll take you back a few years...
I have been working in the coffee industry since around 2012 (12 years!!!) working in all sorts of roles from restaurant barista, barista trainer to some of London's top hotels, production coffee roaster, quality control leader, coffee laboratory assistant, through to being a coffee consultant, and this is really where our story starts.

After moving up and down the country for various roles, I found myself working in the beautiful city of Edinburgh working as a coffee consultant and lab assistant for one of the top coffee consultants in the world, Coffee Nexus

Whilst working with Coffee Nexus, I also had the opportunity to work my own independent consultancy, and hence Chipp Coffee Co. came to life.
I had about 3 amazing years learning incredible things about the coffee industry, working at the forefront of coffee analysis and sourcing technology with Coffee Nexus whilst also consulting with brands around the world on my own.

It came to a point where I was moving back to my hometown of Leeds and finally found myself in a position thinking, "I should practice what I preach", after everything I've learnt about coffee roasting, ethical and sustainable sourcing, I have an opportunity here to do something great!

And so the Chipp Coffee Co. roastery came to life, making sure we would always keep to our core values of ethical sourced coffee, doing good for the planet and ensuring exceptional customer service we have continued to grow and build our partnerships stronger and stronger over the years.

So what is Ethical and Sustainable coffee?

I've seen these words thrown about so often by coffee roasteries over the years it kind of just feels like a marketing buzzword you need to have to seem legitimate these days.
For us, the terms ethical and sustainable are two pretty broad words that can be difficult to back up for some.

Ethical coffee:
We always have and always will only purchase speciality grade coffees, with coffee being speciality this doesn't just mean it has a certain quality that we are looking for, it also means that the person or people who have produced that coffee is being paid more than fairly for their hard work.
We work with importing partners and when we can directly with the coffee producers to ensure that any coffee we buy can be traced back to the farmer (sometimes even to the exact tree!), by doing this we know that what we are buying has had an above average compensation paid to the producer, typically well over that of even fair trade.
More so than this, is also our commitment to keep buying and supporting the producers we work with year after year.

Rather than just buying whatever coffee tastes best from the samples our import partners give us, we try our best to keep buying coffees from the same producers every harvest, meaning that no matter the road blocks, yield or other possible implication there may be, we can keep supporting these coffee farmers year after year.

A great story here, is the Shyira washing station in Rwanda.
We've been buying coffee from Shyira for over 5 years now consistently, though back in May of 2020 the local community were hit by an awful landslide which devastated much of their crops, homes and livelihoods.  
We joined a collective of other coffee roasters around the globe to raise funds for the Shyira community and continue to committing to buying their crops.

Thankfully the Shyira community managed to regain their coffee farms and livelihoods again and rebuild the infrastructure, though the next years crop had been impacted on quality by the landslides we wanted to keep supporting these incredible people and if you've been lucky enough to try our Rwanda Shyira coffees, you can see how they have been able to get back to that incredible quality of coffee production again.


and this brings us onto Sustainability...

What is Sustainable coffee?

Sustainability is another very broad term thrown about in todays marketing language.
From my eyes, sustainable coffee isn't just how sustainable the production of the coffee is, it is also about the sustainability of the coffee producers livelihood, the agricultural sustainability and the long term impact of our work making coffee for the end consumer (you).

So what do we look for in Sustainable coffee?
Well first of all, we ask questions, we will find all the inforamtion we can about a potential new coffee before we purchase it and make sure it ticks all our boxes.

Most importantly, we need to make sure what we are paying for coffee is not just a fair price but one that is above the cost of production for the coffee producer, to ensure they have a sustainable profit from their crops. Making sure we can tick this box ensures that next year, that same producer can hopefully rely on us to buy their coffee again at a more than fair price, they can reinvest into their farming practices, their family and the local community.
Without the business sustainability here, there wouldn't be any profit for the producer to keep doing the incredible work they do and also would go against my very first point, being ethically sourced.

Agricultural sustainability, this one is a little trickier for us to keep a handle on, but we do our best.
Coffee is an agricultural crop and needs to be treated as such, coffee farmers know this all too well, so we see many coffee farms being multi crop productions, who also grow root vegetables, fruits, all through to sugarcane and peppercorn.
Ensuring there is diversity in the crops being grown gives coffee producers multi income streams for when commodity markets sometimes dip but makes sure if the worst were to happen to one crop (say a coffee plant disease), they still have other crops generating income to help maintain a profitable lifestyle.

Not only does the above help with business sustainability again but it also helps the biome in which the coffee is being grown be diversified by wildlife, from birds and insects to bees and reptiles. All creatures found within the crop growing environments usually have an important job of their own to help keep the land fertile and keep sustainable growth for the coffee producers agriculture.

I feel like i've waffled on a bit here, but that in a nutshell, is what sustainable and ethical coffee is to us.

At the end of the day we are trying to do the best we can to ensure the best long term outcome for the producers we buy coffee from.


Sustainable coffee brand:

Now with all the above said, we do need to look at what we do as a brand to keep up our side of sustainability.

Coffee packaging is a big topic, it is also a really difficult topic!
Independent brands like us take on the burden of trying to make sure what we do is sustainable for the environment, we don't always get it right, but we very well try our best!
At Chipp Coffee Co. our aim is to always make sure our packaging is 100% recyclable, from the retail boxes sourced from sustainable card producers, the coffee bags made from fully recyclable plastic (also produced 100% carbon neutral).

We even offset 100% of our carbon produced each year to make sure we are a carbon neutral business.


That's us really. 
Our work means we get to source amazing coffees from incredible producers who share the same values as us, we also get to build long lasting relationships with these producers by working with them year after year where we can.

Oh and lastly... who is Leo?!


cute owl mascot

Leo, our wonderful little owl mascot.

Named after the old roman name for Leeds - Leodis, Leo also encapsulates the wonderful city of leeds's animal crest, the Owl.
If you've visited Leeds city centre, you may have seen golden owls dotted about!

You'll see our Leo all over Chipp Coffee Co. branding too! 


That's us really, Welcome to Chipp Coffee Co.

Big love, 
Zach x