Let's Talk about Transparency in Coffee

Farm to cup coffee directly from origin

With the rising prices of coffee, it's hard to justify what you see in the cart. Plus shipping. We get it. Amazon has changed everything in regards to what we are used to with free shipping. It's easy, it's convenient, and we all use it.

Here at Gento, our goal is to revolutionize inefficient value chains in the volatile coffee market by providing the world with direct access to the best roasted coffee produced 100% at origin in Guatemala. More revenue can stay in the producing country when the final roasted product can be purchased directly from the source. 

With specific volatile commodities, like coffee, buying them from the source can be costly even though it's more beneficial for coffee-producing countries. Let's dig in.

What does it mean to be transparent? 

Telling you where the money is going. First, we give 10% of all of the profits to be invested in Guatemala's education for women and food security programs.  

So that leaves us with 90% left.

Second, most of the revenue goes back into running the business. Here's where we've seen the largest increase in costs since January 2023:

  • Fuel surcharges - 15%+ increase
  • Shipping - 30% increase
  • Farm Labor - 7% increase
  • Agri inputs - 60%+ increase
  • General Transport - 40% + increase
  • Materials and marketing - 30%+ increase

Third, to pay our employees. We want to ensure we pay our team fairly and equitably. 

Where are we based?

We are based in Guatemala City. Our founder's family farm, is located in the Fraijanes region which is 45 minutes outside of Guatemala City, the rest of our coffees we purchase from small and medium sized producers from different regions of Guatemala showcasing the variety of flavors Guatemalan coffees have to offer. Our small team is between 6-7 employees, including one part time employee based out of Nashville, TN (me, hi!). 

Why is coffee so expensive?

Specialty coffee is a commodity. Specialty coffee must be handpicked when at perfect ripeness, grown in high altitudes with the best soil and most of times, in microlots. Which makes specialty coffee harder to get a hold of, especially with climate changes impacting harvest seasons and increasing labor and material costs. For Gento, it's been difficult keeping up with the rising costs while maintaining an affordable farm-to-cup model with coffee coming directly from Guatemala. Many coffee farms are going out of business as they can't manage the increasing prices to maintain their practices. 

Why is shipping so expensive?

Shipping prices for businesses have skyrocketed since the pandemic. We've worked endlessly to come up with other alternative methods to try and get shipping costs down, especially with the additional 'fuel charges' we receive from carriers. It's just become progressively difficult to ship from Guatemala at a cost effective rate as we had in previous years.How do other coffee companies afford shipping?

They have a few options. They can either purchase green beans at a much cheaper cost and roast the coffee themselves, and then ship within the US.  Or ship the coffee in large bundles to a warehouse where they sit until they are sold directly to the consumer or to grocery stores. 

Why doesn't Gento do that? 

We ship our coffee at peak freshness so you'll receive a fresh productand it's truly the perfect time to allow gasses to be released. The package will sometimes change carriers though to help with shipping costs.

So what can we do about it?

The good news is the more you buy, the cheaper the shipping will be. Add more to your cart and you'll see the cost of shipping go down. Free shipping is available after $120.

Drinking coffee should be an experience and that starts with knowing what's in your cup. 

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