I have always had an interesting relationship with coffee. Growing up there was never really coffee in my household; my dad didn’t drink it before work and my mom raised me to be a straight up tea kinda gal, staying true to her herbalist roots. I never thought that a lack of coffee was unusual in today’s society until I got to college and everyone mainlined multiple cups a day, trying to keep up with the crazy workload that was any major at Boston College. So, like any curious individual might do, I tried some. And oh, my goodness, it was awful. Coffee, to me, tasted like straight up burnt beans dipped in water that gave me the jitters. I was not a fan. I could get away with the mixed coffee drinks at some of the coffee chains that were essentially sugar with a splash of coffee, but generally speaking I stuck with tea.
Fast forward ten years, and I’ve changed my mind. Now I don’t know if it was turning 30, switching over to full time working at home on my business, or just a palate change but I’ve been slowly integrating coffee into my routine. Mind you, it isn’t a daily occurrence, but I have been loving the ritual that comes with brewing a great cup of coffee. In the morning the deliberate movements and moments that happen in order to get that velvety smoothness that I very much so enjoy is a wonderful way to mindfully wake up. I’ve been using a beautiful copper french press, a milk frother, and an electric kettle to create the perfect cup, and while tools are wonderful, ingredients are the difference between those burnt beans and a luxurious cup of caffeine.
My go-to coffee comes from Arbor Day. If you’ve been reading Habits of a Modern Hippie for a while, you know that I am very particular about how I source my food. And when coffee came back into my life, my sourcing requirements were exceptionally strict- as I knew the coffee industry isn’t traditionally the most sustainable. Arbor Day is a wonderful exception!
“We inspire people to plant, nurture, and celebrate trees.”
This is the mission statement of the Arbor Day Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit conservation and education organization. The company that sells the beautiful blends of coffee that currently grace the shelves of my pantry. Founded in 1972 the Arbor Day Foundation has grown to become the largest nonprofit membership organization dedicated to planting trees, with over one million members and supporters, all just as passionate about the environment as I am. So you know that a coffee brand that comes from an ecologically compassionate background is bound to be delicious. And it is, because sustainability produces a high end product- not bogged down by profit-driven quick turnarounds of poor quality coffee.
One of the biggest differences in the way that Arbor Day Coffee is sourced is that it is grown in the shade, as much of the coffee on the current market is grown under the sun. Around 40 years ago as the coffee industry boomed, farmers were paid on a per-pound basis regardless of the quality of their coffee. In order to increase yield and productivity farmers used a practice of clear-cutting areas of rain forest to make way for an easier, cheaper method of growing coffee in the sun. However, because of this method the earth used to grow this coffee quickly becomes infertile, leading to the rainforest being chopped down. Shade grown coffee doesn’t create this issue! Instead, coffee plants thrive amid the rain forest trees. By preserving existing rain forest and planting more trees to facilitate their growing process, coffee farmers are providing habitat for the rare and wonderful animals and plants that rely on this ecosystem!
So not only, are Arbor Day’s blends delicious (I have the Arbor Day, the Italian Roast, and the La Sombra blend) but they are a product you can feel wonderful about loving! With rich, robust flavors without any hint of unwanted bitterness (read no more burnt-tasting beans!) you can made a beautiful cup of coffee. I especially love to foam up a an ounce or so of homemade almond milk to add to the coffee’s richness- plus foam on top of a latte is so much fun to style for Instagram (because we all know how much I adore the ‘gram!) If you’d like to try the coffee yourself you can pop over to Arbor Day’s coffee page and either join the coffee club (you get a cute travel mug as well!) or grab a bag- and don’t forget to use code MODHIPPIE for 10% off your order!
I’d love to know- are you a coffee fan? What is your favorite way to enjoy caffeine in the morning! Let me know down below or pop over to my Instagram!
This is a sponsored conversation with Arbor Day. All opinions are my own.
For the majority of people, I believe coffee is an acquired taste. Never heard anyone tell me they liked coffee from the first time they tried it. For me, I started drinking coffee around 14-15 years old. Initially, I drank it just because it helped me keep focus late at night doing homework. After a few years I came to love the taste and have been drinking it ever since.