Coffee School - FAQ

What is the Clover™? Answer

Can my bookclub, writing club or other organization use your space for meetings? Answer

Are your stores wheelchair accessible? Answer

Do your cafes have wireless access? Answer

I have a party coming up. Can I use your space? Answer

Do you offer custom roasts? Answer

Do you offer special blends of coffee? Answer

How can I pay for my order? Answer

What is the AGRO Card? Answer

I have questions about my order, how can I contact your sales staff? Answer

There is a problem with my order. What should I do? Answer

What is a single origin coffee? Answer

Do you blend your coffees? Answer

What is the difference between Robusta and Arabica and what kind do you use? Answer

Why are organic coffees special? Answer

Why should I choose fair-trade? Answer

How does my dollar affect the farmer? Answer

How much money goes to the farmer? Answer

Why should I care? Answer

How can I get involved in fair-trade practices? Answer

How does fair-trade affect communities in producing countries? Answer

How is Crop2Cup™ different from other trade practices? Answer

How does it affect me and my coffee? Answer

How does it affect the farmer? Answer

The CafeBack to Top of Page

What is the Clover™?

The Clover™ is a single-cup brewing machine that allows our barista to control the temperature and timing of each brew prepared. It functions much like a press-pot, using a piston to suck your freshly brewed coffee away from the remaining grounds. Using this device we can maximize the quality of each brew, ensuring your satisfaction.

Can my bookclub, writing club or other organization use your space for meetings?

Of course. AGRO Cafe welcomes all sorts of bookclubs, fitness groups, game enthusiasts, and other special clubs into our Cafes. Feel free to drop by one of our locations to see if the space is right for you, or contact us and ask about a particular location's amenities. If you are part of a rather large group or feel that your group has special needs or requests then please contact us at info@agrocafe.org or directly by phoning one of our shops. Find the numbers on our contact us page.

Are your stores wheelchair accessible?

Our current locations are indeed wheelchair accessible and we will always adhere to all local accessibility bylaws. Should you have any other special access requests please feel free to contact us at any of our locations.

Do your cafes have wireless access?

Yes, wireless internet access is free for our customers.

I have a party coming up. Can I use your space?

AGRO Cafe will rent its locations for special events. Please send e-mail inquiries to info@agrocafe.org or contact our location managers directly via telephone.

ShopBack to Top of Page

Do you offer custom roasts?

Yes, for orders of 5 lbs of coffee or more we will gladly have our team roast according to your desired profile.

Do you offer special blends of coffee?

Although we primarily feature single origin coffees in order to focus on the unique flavours of each growing region, our team of roasters are always experimenting with blends, matching nuances of one bean with tastes of another. Special blends will be featured in our webstore and at our Cafe locations from time to time.

How can I pay for my order?

We accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, or regular account payments all through PayPal.

What is the AGRO Card?

The AGRO Card is a special way for you to make the most of your visits to our retail locations. You may purchase the AGRO Card as a gift preloaded with cash or just get one for yourself making purchases much more convenient. The card will also track your purchases so that you can receive free beverages (purchase 8 of any one coffee beverage and receive that same beverage free of charge) when visiting our Cafes. This allows you to make use of special offers instore like receiving a discount on a pound of our coffee of the week.

I have questions about my order, how can I contact your sales staff?

Drop us a line at orders@agrocafe.org and our staff will promptly answer any questions you might have.

There is a problem with my order. What should I do?

Your satisfaction is our number one concern. Please send an e-mail about any problems you might have with your product to orders@agrocafe.org.

Our BeansBack to Top of Page

What is a single origin coffee?

A coffee is characterized as single origin when it comes from one country and one plantation or growing region within that country. This is in contrast with blend, which may be any mix of beans from several different source regions.

Do you blend your coffees?

AGRO Cafe prefers to focus on the characteristics of single origin beans in order to showcase the efforts of the farmers that work the fields, but occasionally we find several beans that simply aren't as happy alone as they are blended. We bring these beans together in blends so that flavours of one can draw out or frame flavours of another.

What is the difference between Robusta and Arabica and what kind do you use?

Robusta and Arabica are two species of coffee, specifically Coffea robusta (also known as Coffea canephora) and Coffea arabica. Robusta originated in western Africa and is easier and cheaper to care for than Arabica coffee. Robusta is characteristically higher in caffeine levels--about twice that found in Arabica--and is more bitter than Arabica. AGRO Cafe uses only specialty grade Arabica beans, whether as single origin or featured in blends, because we believe that quality in the cup is of the utmost importance.

Why are organic coffees special?

Certified Organic products, with their adherence to strict guidelines prohibiting the use of chemical sprays and fertilizers during their development and production are healthful for the environment, the communities in which they are produced, the farmers that work to produce and harvest them, and for the many individuals that enjoy consuming them. Throughout the whole chain from crop to cup, organic products are better for people and the world.

Why should I choose fair-trade?

For the same reasons that we choose, every day, to believe that a minimum working wage is good. Setting minimum pricelines for products like coffee will prevent workers in developing countries from being underpaid for their efforts to produce quality products that the rest of the world enjoys. The Fair-trade pricefloor ensures that farmers enjoy a humane standard of living, that their communities enjoy wealth and prosperity, and that unpredictable market trends can't rob them of their right, the same right of all men and women, to receive just compensation for a valued service rendered. By choosing fair-trade products you can make a statement that the economic rights you enjoy ought to, in an ethically just system, be enjoyed by all people.

FarmersBack to Top of Page

How does my dollar affect the farmer?

Coffee farmers the world over rely on coffee sales in shops like ours to make a living. If people aren't buying, farmers aren't getting paid. In the same way that using your dollars to vote locally supports the development of businesses and services in your community, choosing to buy fair-trade, organic products produced half-way across the globe ensures that farmers there are supporting healthy families in healthy communities. Because Fair-trade is auditable, you can be assured, simply by asking to see records kept by officiating organizations like FLO Cert, that farmers are actually getting paid for their work when you purchase their products. Farm labourers work harder than any other members in the coffee industry but they are always at the bottom of the wage scale.

How much money goes to the farmer?

The Value Chain

Why should I care?

We can't expect to change the way you feel about the world, but we hope that we can influence the way you think, especially about the origins of the products that you enjoy daily. AGRO Cafe believes that conscious decision-making begets conscience decision-making. That may sound a bit silly, but the more you know about the generally unconscious decisions you make every day - such as choosing this coffee over that - the more likely you are to act according to your own ethical opinions. You should choose fair-trade and organic because you care about other people in the world and the wages that they earn. You should choose fair-trade and organic because you believe that raising standards of living everywhere is a good thing. You should choose fair-trade and organic because you hope that if roles were reversed others would choose them for you.

How can I get involved in fair-trade practices?

By asking questions just like that one. Ask if products that you buy are fair-trade. Ask why others don't support open, auditable systems of trade. Ask your friends to choose fair-trade. The bottom line is that you can get involved in fair-trade practices by simply questioning why it is you pay a certain price for the products you enjoy. You can also contact us at info@agrocafe.org or contact a number of other organizations that support fair-trade.

How does fair-trade affect communities in producing countries?

Fair-trade tries to ensure that when you pay for a cup of coffee, the highest possible percentage of your dollar returns directly back to the farmer. Farmers making living wages are better able to develop sustainable community initiatives for growth and development. This means that the fair-trade price floor ensures a minimum value for the efforts of farmers, and this directly affects the communities that those farmers are part of.

Crop2Cup™Back to Top of Page

How is Crop2Cup™ different from other trade practices?

Crop2Cup™ is a term that we use at AGRO Cafe to describe the direct link that we offer our guests to the farms and farmers that produce their coffee. Our involvement in the entire production chain, from seedling to piping hot cup of coffee, allows us to assure the coffee drinker that every person involved in the production, trade, and sale of our coffee was treated fairly and with respect. You as a consumer can feel confident that the coffee you buy has merit, not just in terms of taste, but in the ethics followed by all the people that brought it to you. Other trade practices rely on assumptions about a coffee's ethical origins or the environmental impact that its production has on the farms and communities that produce it. We, with our Crop2Cup™ model, can provide you with first-hand accounts of how the choices we make affect the farms and farmers across the world.

How does it affect me and my coffee?

Crop2Cup™ brings you peace of mind, and a first-hand account of the steps taken to ensure that your coffee is of the best quality possible, ethically and gastronomically.

How does it affect the farmer?

The farmer is the originator of your favourite cup of coffee, and Crop2Cup™ allows us to feature him in his rightful place at the top of the production chain. When you sit and enjoy your preferred coffee beverage you should celebrate the efforts of your barista and your roaster to bring the best possible experience to your table, but first celebrate the efforts of the farmer. Our position, whether as coffee artists or coffee drinkers, depends entirely on the fruits of the farmer's labour, and AGRO Cafe thinks it's about time that we recognize and value this before anything else.