How can a cooperative based in Guatemala, where coffee grows, compete with coffee companies that roast locally in the United States?
I had the opportunity to work with Farmer-to-Farmer, a USAID organization and the Kishé team for two weeks developing a marketing plan. We evaluated marketing techniques and analyzed strategies that competitors are using to be able to compete on a global level. What I realized is that there are hardly any other cooperative owned coffee companies out there, which means educating the consumer about what Farmer-Owned Coffee is becomes a priority.
I believe that educating the consumer in any industry is a foundational piece in creating momentum and loyalty behind any brand.
I work full time as the Marketing Director at indi chocolate, located in Pike Place Market. We make bean-to-bar chocolate. Everyday people from all over the world come into the store and have never even thought about where chocolate comes from, how it is grown, or the process of how cacao is made into chocolate, but everyone is curious. When they learn that we work directly with farmers, that we are using high quality cacao beans, and we are doing it all in small batches, they understand the value of the chocolate we are making.
Come back next week for the last part of this article...