And it’s why you see fewer and fewer people doing Burundi Email List it. And that’s something that I don’t think the industry has totally understood yet—is just how in jeopardy the world’s supply of great coffee actually is. Kathleen Schalch 08:29 Fifteen years ago, Rob Terenzi had no idea he was going to take all this on. He just wanted to find a way to help his new friends. And he saw an opportunity. He stayed on in Nicaragua working as a tour guide and bartender. Tourists were Burundi Email List beginning to come. They were staying in hotels and being served instant coffee imported from somewhere else. It tasted bitter, acrid, just terrible, according to Rob. So one day he visited a coffee farm and brought a couple of bags of coffee to a friend who ran a hostel. Rob Burundi Email List Terenzi 08:59 And he was like, this coffee is fantastic! Can you get it for my hostel.
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That basically was the moment where it went from just a souvenir Burundi Email List from a farm to a business. That was kind of the birth of Vega 1.0. Kathleen Schalch 09:12 For two and a half years, Rob worked with a cooperative of 23 women growers, helping them roast their coffee and sell it domestically to hotels and restaurants in tourist cities. Rob Terenzi 09:22 And they went from making 65 to 70 cents to five to $6 a pound on that coffee. Kathleen Schalch 09:27 Rob eventually Burundi Email List returned to the US. He earned degrees in law and economics and married a classmate named Noushin Ketabi. He joined a high-profile Silicon Valley law firm. Noushin became Burundi Email List an energy policy analyst. Then in 2013, Rob took Noushin and his best friend from college, Will DeLuca, on a trip to Nicaragua.
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He wanted them to see the places and meet the people he had Burundi Email List grown to love. What greeted them was devastation. A fungus called coffee rust had spread across the region. Once lush fields were empty. Whole farms were ruined. Rob Terenzi 10:08 They were losing all of their plants. It was a catalyst for us starting this company again. Kathleen Schalch 10:17 They all quit their jobs. Rob and Noushin moved to Nicaragua. Will stayed in New York to handle Burundi Email List marketing and logistics. Rob Terenzi 10:25 The way we looked at it, we were going to take a year sabbatical and kind of see if we could get this to work. And if we couldn’t, it was only a year and we were going to be okay. That was now seven years ago. Kathleen Schalch 10:38 Their plan was Burundi Email List to roast and package the coffee there in Nicaragua, and ship it directly.