Power to the People Through A Cup of Coffee

Blockchain innovation in the coffee industry
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Coffee Shift Inc., a Bay Area-based start-up, is bent on rectifying the gross inequity within the coffee trade by shifting the balance of power from corporations back to the bean growers through the use of the blockchain system.

According to Mordor Intelligence, “the global coffee market was valued at USD 102.02 billion in 2020, and it is projected to reach a CAGR of 4.28% during the forecast period of 2021-2026.”

The use of blockchain technology can foreseeably transform this sector by bringing simplification and traceability of assets in the supply chain from coffee bean farms to consumer households.

Coffee Shift: Coffee That’s “Fairer Than Fair Trade”

With a corporate presence in both Silicon Valley and Chinchina, Colombia, Coffee Shift sources and imports small-batch, grower-sourced, certified premium Colombian Arabica Specialty Coffee.

This direct-to-consumer online subscription coffee roasting company uses blockchain technology to provide direct international consumer-to-farmer electronic transactions along with the supporting supply chain technology.

Bypassing the middlemen results in quicker and fairer payments for the growers and more transparent and better pricing for conscientious consumers. 

And, the profits that might otherwise be absorbed effortlessly by these financial intermediaries are instead going into the pockets of those who work tirelessly to grow, harvest, and produce the coffee. 

As more and more consumers shift to more frequent use of home deliveries for products and consumables, the Coffee Shift blockchain system is serving up foreseeable benefits of a continuous supply stream for these participating farmers.

The participating growers also benefit by gaining shares of ownership of Coffee Shift.  As explained by this startup, every grower who sells coffee through the company’s blockchain system gains shares from the company’s option pool.  So, when Coffee Shift succeeds, so do the growers.

Tipping the scales further, the platform enables customers a means of tipping the farmers whose efforts they want to support.

About the Specialty Coffee

Blockchain technology is the gateway for bringing conscientious coffee lovers better specialty coffee.

To all the coffee connoisseurs with a discernible palate for the various tasting notes of coffee…

Specialty coffee is farmed to significantly higher-than-average standards.  It must meet minimum requirements before being scored by a certified Coffee Quality Institute “Q” grader on a standardized scale in ten different categories (such as aroma, flavor, balance, acidity, etc.). 

Whether it’s dark cocoa, vanilla, herbal, floral, or rich nut overtones, the specialty coffee sold through Coffee Shift has been awarded a grade 85, an Excellent grading set through specifications by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) at every stage of the coffee production.

Supercharge the Coffee Shift

A WeFunder Campaign, with a target set at $250,000, is underway to provide investors a vehicle to help Coffee Shift expand operations. 

As part of its growth, Coffee Shift is ramping up their online marketing efforts and initiating a pilot roasting and packaging operation in California.  Coffee Shift is also working to add more participating coffee farmers in Costa Rica and Kenya.

As the campaign grows financial support, Coffee Shift has already made significant strides in expanding its coffee products and international payment cryptocurrency system.

Coffee Shift is partnered with Coinbase Commerce and is set up to accept a variety of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Dai (DAI), Litecoin (LTC), and USD Coin (USDC).

To fundraise, Coffee Shift is adamant about not participating in any sort of Initial Coin Offering (ICO).  Although a common way for blockchain startups to raise money by selling native cryptocurrencies in exchange for monetary investments in the business, ICOs are unregulated and often have their own legal considerations.

As Tyler explains, “We want to build real products that solve real problems.”

The Origins

Founder and CEO, Tyler Pinckard is a former U.S. Army Intelligence Officer, blockchain architect, and Silicon Valley veteran who has been involved in a range of start-ups from seed to series A to late-stage through IPO. 

With a love for coffee and time spent in the heart of the Colombian coffee region, Tyler Pinckard learned about the entire coffee bean production process – from growing, harvesting and the various tasting notes released in the roasting process to the financial realities for farmers who often run their operations at a loss.

“Visiting coffee farms in Colombia, I was shocked to learn how little the farmers receive for the coffee they grow, compared to what we as consumers pay for it here in the US. Now we are friends and partners with them.”

On one of his visits to Columbia, Tyler met his co-founders: farm owner Juan Carlos Escobar and his partner Mauricio Walker, an operations and logistics expert who uses his thirty years of experience to orchestrate the details of transportation, shipping, and storage of coffee.  Walker manages an export collective of 300 small family-owned farms in central Columbia.

As a self-declared disintermediation advocate, Tyler Pinckard is all about “doing business directly with no one in between me and my business.” 

The Coffee Shift mission: social impact and fairness while bringing maximum enjoyment with amazing coffee.

Holly Moore<br>
Holly Moore

Whether it’s writing content for the finance, tech, bioscience, and engineering industries, marketing and building businesses in the design and construction field, coaching on personal and professional development, acting for film and TV, taking care of animals at a wildlife conservation center, serving passengers in an airplane and on a private yacht, or teaching HIIT and water aerobics, Holly thrives off continuous learning, experiencing new environments and people, and connecting the dots to cultivate new insights and understanding. It’s what fuels her life and her writing.

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