Two announcements made in the past week carry significant interest for us here at Royal Coffee: the Ethiopian Coffee Exporter’s Association annual report, and the Good Food Awards Finalist list.
According to ECEA’s official figures, Royal paid the highest average FOB price for Ethiopian coffee from the 2015/16 season of any company, anywhere in the world. This comes while also being amongst the largest buyers by pure volume. Our neighbors on this list are some of the world’s biggest coffee companies, and we promise we are the only ones on here not buying a single bag of Djimmah 5, or any other commercial grades for that matter.
|No||Buyer Name||Tons||USD,000||Price USD/Ton||Volume share||Value share|
|1||Royal Coffee, Inc.||3,812.10||26299.93||6899.06613||3.20%||5.85%|
|2||Falcon Coffees Limited||2,386.02||15096.38||6327.01319||2.00%||3.36%|
|6||InterAmerican Coffee Inc.||1,899.00||10972.88||5,778.24||1.59%||2.44%|
|7||Walter Maftter Sa||3,385.65||15236.25||4,500.24||2.84%||3.39%|
|8||Efico GMBH Tornescher Weg||3,655.50||15711.4||4,298.02||3.07%||3.50%|
|10||Equatorial Traders Limited||8,910.06||33151.54||3,720.69||7.48%||7.37%|
|11||Al Kaher Trading Office Co. Ltd||8,586.00||30831.58||3,590.91||7.21%||6.86%|
|12||Hamburg Coffee Company||5,680.20||20118.21||3,541.81||4.77%||4.48%|
|13||Bernhard Rothfos Gmbh||10464||36198.78||3,459.36||8.78%||8.05%|
|14||Ecom Agroindustrial Corp. Ltd Av||4,076.40||12772.79||3,133.35||3.42%||2.84%|
|15||Mitsui & Co. Ltd||10471.8||32068.22||3,062.34||8.79%||7.13%|
|17||Salem Bin Mahfood Trading Est||4,109.40||12254.37||2,982.03||3.45%||2.73%|
|18||Koninklijke Douwe Egberts||4,358.40||11919.74||2,734.89||3.66%||2.65%|
|19||Al Mustaneer Trading Est||8,820.00||24063.64||2,728.30||7.40%||5.35%|
|20||Socadec S.A Route||6,797.60||17166.99||2,525.45||5.70%||3.82%|
|Total of top 20||119158.03||449513.87||3,772.42||100.00%||100.00%|
Ranked based on the price per ton of coffee purchased. Source: Ethiopian Coffee Exporter’s Association Annual Report
It is deeply satisfying for us be known as the premier importer from the world’s premier origin. Given the recent Good Food Awards announcement, it is clear that the prices we pay and the investments we make are paying off. For anyone familiar with this competition, you know it is almost always dominated by the Birthplace of Coffee. Try as they might to widen the field, this year’s judging panel once again awarded 18 of the top 25 slots to roasters using Ethiopian Coffees.
Of those 18, fully half were sourced by Royal Coffee.
Congratulations to this year’s Good Food Award Finalists & Winners
Winners in Gold
|Roaster||Coffee Origin||Coffee Name||Roaster State|
|Anchorhead Coffee||Guat||Hueheutenango – Codech||WA|
|Bard Coffee||Ethiopia||Hambela Estate||ME|
|BeanFruit Coffee Company||Ethiopia||Adame Gorbota Cooperative||MS|
|Bird Rock Coffee Roasters||Panama||Haciena La Esmeralda Noria Lot||CA|
|Case Coffee Roasters||Ethiopia||Hunkute||OR|
|Craft & Mason Roasting Co.||Ethiopia||Hunkute||MI|
|Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea||Ethiopia||Kossa Kebena||OH|
|Equator Coffee & Teas||Panama||Emeralda Mario – Camaval||CA|
|Giv Coffee||Panama||Boquete – Kotowa Geisha Natural||CT|
|Higher Grounds Trading Co||Ethiopia||Yirgacheffe Idido||MI|
|Intelligentsia Coffee||Ethiopia||Kurimi – Angelino Profile||CA|
|Intelligentsia Coffee||Ethiopia||Kurimi – Chicago Profile||IL|
|Kickapoo Coffee Roasters||Ethiopia||Organic Yirgacheffe Charbanta Natural Process||WI|
|Klatch Coffee||Ethiopia||FTO Gedeb||CA|
|La Colombe Coffee Roasters||Panama||Hacienda La Esmeralda Gesiha||PA|
|Lineage Roasting||Kenya||Kagumoini (Kamacharia Coop)||FL|
|Mr. Espresso||Ethiopia||FTO Worka Natural||CA|
|Noble Coffee Roasting||Ethiopia||Adisu Kidane||OR|
|Noble Coffee Roasting||Ethiopia||Shilcho||OR|
|Novel Coffee Roasters||Ethiopia||Bokasso||TX|
|Olympia Coffee Roasting Co.||Ethiopia||Konga||WA|
|Onyx Coffee Lab||Ethiopia||Hambela Buku||AR|
|OQ Coffee Co.||Ethiopia||Kanyon Mountain Farm||NJ|
|Red Rooster Coffee Roaster||Ethiopia||Washed Hambela||VA|
|Speckled Ax Wood Roasted Coffee||Ethiopia||Bekele Dukale||ME|
|Spyhouse Coffee Roasting Co.||Ethiopia||Kyon Mountain||MN|
This is an accomplishment of which we are incredibly proud. Exceptional green coffees deserve to be roasted with the precision and skill that these companies have displayed, and we are thrilled to have played a role in bringing these coffees to market. Royal has a commitment to our suppliers to pay the best possible prices, and to our customers to deliver outstanding quality, and we are managing to excel at both.
Terrific but is this sustainable in a kleptocracy where journalists are silenced by jail and murder and farmers are imprisoned and murdered by government troops? Many hundreds in recent months according to Amnesty Inernational. A statement to this affect should be rammed down the government’s throat at every opportunity. Of course the ECX (commodity exchange dictatorship which makes it illegal for families to grow and drink the coffee out of their own gardens) is hand in hand with the hyenas in government. The idea that coffee now has a barcode to identify source is laughable. It’s like saying French wine is sourced by putting ‘France’ on the label. The coffee beans are all mixed up and then you can always bribe officials for further clarity. beautiful country being destroyed by the government and ECX.
Hi Gerry, and thank you for your considered comments, and for reading our blog. You raise several issues that deserve attention. Ethiopia is indeed a country with serious problems. The concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few elite, at the expense of ordinary people and various ethnic minorities is a problem not limited to Ethiopia. The recent crackdowns on the press and the heavy-handed response to ethnic protests are extremely worrying. Indeed, it is a dark time for those who value freedom of expression the world over. It has been argued elsewhere that perhaps the global coffee industry ought to boycott Ethiopian coffee, to send a message to the ruling class of that country that these violations of civil liberty will not be tolerated. From my perspective, this would only serve to further punish those who have already suffered the most: the peasant class, the farmers, the coffee producers themselves. Royal Coffee abhors the use of violence and intimidation, but I do not think that a boycott is the correct solution. Regarding the ECX, I would argue strongly that while hardly a perfect system, it has in fact accomplished two incredible things: 1. A higher average cherry price in the field, meaning farmers are receiving more for their crop than under prior regimes. 2. Price transparency. The placement of real-time price boards in cities like Dilla and Djimmah has allowed farmers previously unheard of access to the actual market value of their coffee. This is something that should not be discounted. For years, the buyers in Addis jealously guarded the international market value of their countries coffees. Today, I would say a larger percentage of the FOB price than ever before makes it back to the farmer himself. While the ECX needs a lot of work, and I agree with you entirely about the ridiculous bar code idea, scrapping the system and boycotting Ethiopian coffee altogether do not strike me as the most prudent responses to the recent Government atrocities.
CEO, Royal Coffee, Inc.