Still not sure what a flat white is? We asked this Cape Town barista to explain

2019-10-01 09:11 - Marisa Crous
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Woolies has a flat white on its menu, yet many people outside of Cape Town still have no idea what a 'flat white' is. Most South Africans just love a cappuccinos. 

Even our poll confirmed this!

We asked Cape Town barista, Nonnie, who works at Bean There coffee shop on Wale street to put it to bed "What is a flat white?".

Free coffee! With a cause.

Today, Bean There will be offering free coffee from their cafés in Johannesburg at 44 Stanley and in Cape Town at 58 Wale Street. Coffee lovers around the world will celebrate International Coffee Day on Tuesday 1 October. But why celebrate International Coffee Day you ask?

To indulge in all your favourite coffees, be it a flat white, an Americano or an ice coffee? Yes! But also no.  

While coffee consumption has doubled in the last 40 years, the amount that coffee farmers are paid for the beans they produce is at an all-time low. This year, Coffee Day aims to raise awareness about the plight of coffee farmers around the world. 

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With around three-billion cups consumed every day, coffee has never been more popular. Despite the growing demand, the prices that most coffee producers receive today is more than 30% below the average of the last ten years.

“Most coffee farmers don’t earn enough to cover basic needs, such as food, healthcare and education. If things don’t change, farmers won’t be able to invest in their farms, which will affect the quality of production. This puts both farmers and the entire coffee industry at risk,” says Jonathan Robinson, founder of Bean There Coffee Company, South Africa’s first roaster of Certified Fairtrade coffee.

READ: Bean there, done that: Bespoke coffee destinations all caffeine addicts should check off their list

For conscious coffee drinkers, choosing a Certified Fairtrade coffee is the perfect way to celebrate Coffee Day. The fair trade business practice was developed to ensure that farmers in developing countries get the fair price they need to be sustainable and earn a living income. “Increased yields combined with a fair price are key to lasting change and poverty alleviation,” says Robinson.

Bean There works with co-operatives who represent anything from 600 to 4 000 farmers. “We practice direct fair trade by building sustainable relationships with our small-scale producers, who gather together in local co-operatives to sell their beans. We are able to offer farmers a higher price than other companies, regardless of negative market fluctuations,” says Robinson. “This model allows us to work with farmers on improving their crop quality and support their businesses with inputs and equipment.”

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From bean to cup, the coffee-making process involves many hands; “At every step, there is a person who loves coffee – a farmer, a roaster, a barista or a customer - it’s these people who make coffee great,” says Robinson. 

In this same vain, you can support Deaf Awareness Month, held this September, and aims to highlight deaf people, the challenges they face and the accomplishments they have achieved. The South African public are encouraged to learn about deafness, the deaf community and their culture, and sign language. And, at I Love Coffee, baristas, chefs and waiting staff are all eager to help customers learn the basics of sign language to order their daily fix. Go visit them too!

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