| Coffee |

Coffee Practices: Transparency

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

One of the most important aspects of the movement for quality coffee is transparency. This doesn't mean your cup of joe should be clear, but that the consumer should understand as much about the product as possible.

In the '90s, coffee blends hit the market with a bang. Since then, they have been marketed as "house," "some kind of city" and other weird names that don't represent where the coffee is actually from. These names are fine, as long as sufficient information is given to the consumer on what is included in the blend. What is the point of a "big bear" blend, for example, if you have no idea which coffee-producing countries were involved in the making of that particular blend?

More coffee companies need to start including information on the labels to explain where the coffee is from -- at least country and region, if not individual farm as well. Just like wine, some coffees from the same farm but different lots can have different characteristics. We live in an information age, and this knowledge is vital if we are going to encourage farmers to produce higher-quality beans.

Espresso blends make this even more important. Coffee is seasonal, so each producing country has different seasons for harvesting. This means that it is impossible to have the same exact bean year-round while maintaining a fresh supply. If you do get the same exact bean all year long, that means it was lying around in a warehouse somewhere and is stale.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.