In a year when Union Hand Roasted Coffee became a B Corporation, received several accolades and further scaled its business in the UK and coffee producing countries, the specialty coffee roaster has charted progress on ethical purchasing and sustainable business practices in its Annual Impact Report
Union sourced more than two million kilos of coffee during its financial year September 2021-August 2022 | Photo credit: Union Hand Roasted Coffee
Union Hand Roasted Coffee has released its Annual Impact Report detailing it progress on promoting ethical and environmentally sustainable business practices across its supply chain.
Union sourced more than two million kilos of specialty coffee during its financial year September 2021-August 2022.
Of that volume 93% was purchased via its Union Direct Trade platform with the remainder procured through importers to maintain supply continuity during Covid-19 disruption to shipping.
Eighty-eight percent came from smallholder farmers and 12% was sourced from micro-mills or family estates from 14 countries, with Peru, Costa Rica and Brazil accounting for 26%, 11% and 11% respectively.
Eighty-four percent of coffee sourced by Union was paid above the Fairtrade minimum price of $1.60, with more than $3m paid above the C-Price average of $2.22 for the period.
“Since 2001, we have been working tirelessly with our partners at origin and in the UK to make specialty coffee sustainable and accessible to all,” wrote Violeta Stephens, Managing Director, Union Hand Roasted Coffee, in the report.
“As we report on our impact in 2022, we are eager to continue our work and lead by example in creating a more sustainable and equitable future,” Stephens added.
On its environmental impact, Union reported it had reduced 23 tonnes of CO2
emissions by switching to carbon neutral packaging, rolled out fully recyclable packaging for its 200g retail packaged coffee range and offset Scope 1 and 2 emissions with 300 carbon credits from the CommuniTree Carbon Program.
The specialty coffee roaster received several awards in 2022, including Best Specialty Coffee Roaster Europe
and Most Ethical Brand Europe, at Allegra Group’s European Coffee Awards
2022 and The Queen's Award for Enterprise: Sustainable Development.
Union also became a B Corporation
in April 2022, scoring 106.3 out of a possible 200 points – the average B Corp score is 50.9.
Union was founded by Jeremy Torz and Steven Macatonia in 2001 with the aim of improving coffee farmer livelihoods through fair prices and elevated coffee quality. The company later developed its pioneering Union Direct Trade sourcing approach and introduced it to the UK market.
The specialty coffee roaster now works with more than 40 producer partners of mostly smallholder farmers from 14 countries across Africa and Latin America, representing around 13,000 family farms and 65,000 individuals.