Uganda, September 2016
Guest post by Daniel Wordsworth, President & CEO of the American Refugee Committee (ARC)
Since I first came to Minnesota, I’ve held a special place for Dunn Brothers. Maybe it’s a warm cup that helps me cope with the brutal Minnesota winters. Maybe it’s their obsession with delivering quality and flavor to customers like me while staying committed to rewarding the farmers who grow the coffee. Or maybe it’s because Dunn Brothers reminds me of the way ARC also strives to be –– not setting up shop to simply sell a product but engaging with the people we serve to become a trusted neighbor in the communities where we work.
American Refugee Committee has been partnering with Dunn Brothers for a few years now, starting with the Changemaker Chocolate Bar – a B.T. McElrath dark chocolate crafted with Dunn Brothers coffee and benefitting ARC. Since then Dunn Brothers has been a sponsor of ARC’s Changemakers Ball gala fundraiser. At this year’s event their coffee will be brewed into a coffee-flavored beer crafted by Summit Brewery.
And this year, Dunn Brothers launched the Changemaker Collection, a selection of coffee beans sourced from the very same communities around the world where ARC works with refugees. In February, a bean from Burundi was available in all 87 Dunn Brothers Coffee locations, with purchases benefitting the Burundian refugees ARC assists in Rwanda and the more than 3 million people we work with worldwide.
Now, we’re really excited for the arrival of the second bean in the Changemaker Collection, this one from Uganda. The Uganda coffee is complex and rich in body, with bold acidity and lots of sweet caramel flavor to balance. Spice and cedar aroma notes and a crisp tangerine-like tartness complete the finish.
Sales from the Changemaker Collection Uganda bean can help our team in Uganda who works to provide things like clean water and protection to refugees living in places like Nakivale refugee settlement – a refugee camp established 60 years ago!
At ARC, we’re incredibly grateful for the partnership of Dunn Brothers and all its franchisees and coffee-drinking customers. We’re so thankful to be working together to create breakthrough humanitarian solutions to assist refugees worldwide.
Burundi, February 2016
Our new, featured bean is a Kirema Microlot bean from Burundi. This wonderful coffee isn’t just notable for its unique flavors, but it’s also the first in our Changemakers Collection, in which the proceeds will help to improve the lives of refugees across the world.
The Changemakers Collection is a partnership with the American Refugee Committee (ARC), a Minneapolis-based organization that provides aid to refugees across the world, including many from coffee-growing communities from which we buy our beans. Through the proceeds from the beans in this collection, we’ll donate $10,000 to the ARC this year.
The first in the collection is the Kirema bean, from the microlots of the Kayanza province of Burundi. This bean is a medium roast that embodies a number of great flavors including a lively chocolate and spice character. The acidity of the bean is sharp and vibrant, which pairs well with the coffee’s smooth, full body. Finishing off the coffee is an aftertaste full of spice along with a precious hint of sweet caramel.
Our co-CEO and coffee buyer Skip Fay said: “I always eagerly await the arrival of Burundi coffees. We started buying them about 10 years ago, and after our visits we really developed an affinity for them.”
The Kirema bean’s unique flavor profile stems from the raised drying beds the beans are prepared on. The freshly picked and processed beans are placed on the raised bed and constantly raked to create maximum air circulation for even drying.
Burundi has long been a source of some of the world’s best coffees, and we’ve enjoyed long term relationships with farmers and their co-ops in the country.
Unfortunately, over the last nine months, hundreds of thousands of Burundian people have been displaced from their country due to internal political strife. The ARC has been helping by offering shelter, food, clothing and medical supplies.
Skip added: “Giving back to a group of displaced peoples from coffee-growing regions can be more than an aspirational goal through the connection we’ve made with the ARC, our storeowners, staff and customers throughout the country.”
We’ve always believed in good stewardship. As a coffee purchaser, we must reward the farmer, protect the environment, and better the communities where the coffee is grown. By donating to an organization that helps the people in the community, we’re continuing to be a steward even in a time of crisis.