She says people in the community are able to pay for health Cape Verde Email List ​care and education for their children. Mayra Velázquez 21:29 Some of the women who belong to my cooperative and work with Vega are fixing up their homes and are able to send their children even to university. The ones working in the plant pay for childcare, and that generates income for others. We take a lot of pride in being the ones who grow this coffee and processing it ourselves. Cape Verde Email List Also, my cooperative is using the earnings from selling our coffee to Vega to buy enough land for two new coffee plantations. Jonathan Levine 22:05 To earn the money they could churn back into the community, Vega needed to build a customer base from scratch. Cape Verde Email List After all, they had cut out all the retailers and coffee shops.

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Vega had raised about $40,000 through crowdfunding Cape Verde Email List and convinced those early investors to sign up for regular shipments of coffee through Vega’s online subscription service. They formally launched the company at a social impact conference in San Francisco, and pulled in media coverage from Forbes, the Huffington Post, and CNN. Will DeLuca, Vega’s third founding partner, built the website. And he looked for ways to cut costs and expand sales. He’d Cape Verde Email List been a computer geek since high school and had worked on everything from peer-to-peer file sharing to e-commerce. Making Vega profitable, though, was a challenge, especially in the beginning. But as sales climbed, unit costs dropped. Will says the big breakthrough came when Vega tapped into a new market: colleges and universities that wanted sustainably grown Cape Verde Email List coffee with a story they could be proud of.

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Will DeLuca 23:11 That became our next biggest base Cape Verde Email List just because one university was the equivalent of several thousand subscribers. Jonathan Levine 23:20 And then came an even bigger customer: Daily Harvest, a company that delivers frozen meals using Vega’s coffee to flavor smoothies and ice cream. Within three years, Vega was turning a profit. In 2016, the company shipped around 5,000 pounds of coffee. This year, Vega expects the Cape Verde Email List volume to soar to 200,000 pounds. That’s a whopping 60 percent over just a year ago. Will says one advantage Vega Coffee enjoys is low overhead—space, salaries, everything costs less than Nicaragua. Shipping costs could have been prohibitive since roasted coffee Cape Verde Email List has to travel by plane, and mailing small packages can cost a fortune. But it turns out, there’s an app for that! Will DeLuca 24:07.

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