Cafédirect celebrates smallholder farmers with new espresso line

Design studio Family (and friends) have once again partnered with ethical coffee leaders Cafédirect to create a new product line of premium espresso under the ‘Familia’ label.

The packaging celebrates smallholder coffee growing communities that Cafédirect work with – the farming families who are the life force of the business.

The new espresso blend focuses on celebrating the incredible smallholder farming families that work hard against many odds to give consumers access to the most phenomenal coffee.

‘Espresso Familia’ is a smooth and slow-roasted espresso, with notes of dark chocolate and treacle, using the finest quality beans sourced from co-operatives across the Latin American continent.

The new espresso range sits under the Cafédirect master brand, positioned to appeal to discerning drinkers, who have an interest in taste and provenance, and importantly willing to pay a justified premium for high-quality, ethically traded beans.

Smallholder heroes

The project set out to raise awareness on what goes on behind the scenes in coffee production. Not many are aware that between 60-70% of the world’s coffee supply is grown and harvested by smallholder farming co-operatives and communities, often just one family working all together on plots under 5 hectares.

Coffee farmers face a multitude of external forces which influence profit margins, supply chain and harvest, from socioeconomic concerns to environmental issues. Around 90% of coffee is grown in developing nations, the farmers are often isolated and dependent on their farms for survival, yet there is a distinct lack of support offered to them by local governments.

And that’s where Cafédirect comes in.

“Our goal is for every smallholder farmer to earn a living income, to be able to invest in their business and afford a decent standard of living” says Malek Mokrani, Senior Brand Manager at Cafédirect.

Espresso that does more.

Market analysis revealed that the espresso category is saturated with classic espresso brands that mostly focus on strength and ‘Italian styling’.

F&f wanted to develop a distinct personality for espresso, communicating Cafédirect’s purpose-led mission to improve grower livelihoods whilst still conveying a premium, high quality drinking experience.

As with all their assignments, F&f used their ShelfHappy® principles to maximise appeal and shelf standout.

‘Family is everything’ emerged as the top-line proposition, which helps to shine a light on the smallholder grower families who face a multitude of internal and external challenges to their farms but work together to produce truly exceptional coffee. The family element also creates an emotional pull for consumers who are looking for something more than just their regular morning espresso.

“On pack, this story is brought to life by grower and consumer hands reaching out to connect. This illustrates the feeling of togetherness, craft and care that goes into Cafédirect Espresso, from growers to roasters, all the way to the consumer’s cup” says Alex Durbridge, Co-founder and Creative Director of F&f.

The brand’s ‘Infinitely Better’ icon is featured on the front of pack which acts both as a seal of excellence and brings the range architecture together, while exhibiting Cafédirect’s continued mission to make coffee ‘Better for Everyone’.

Espresso Familia will be rolled out to retail in the coming weeks and is available to purchase on Ocado.

Cafédirect’s story

It was set up in 1991 by a group of social enterprises including Traidcraft and Oxfam in response to the global coffee crisis of the time – when the price of beans crashed from highs of $1.50 to a low of $0.46 per pound. It was the first coffee to carry the Fairtrade Mark and had one purpose, to ensure growers were paid fairly for their crops.

Today, Cafédirect is still one of the most ethically responsible B-Corp brands in the UK. They are determined to make a difference to grower co-operatives by not only offering the Fairtrade premium, but by investing 50% of their profits on initiatives alongside their sister charity organisation ‘Producers Direct’ to help educate, fund and develop projects and local infrastructure which ensures co-operatives have the necessary resources to continue to expand and grow.