Coffee growers from around the world visit Portland

The International Women’s Coffee Alliance held its conference in Boston, and afterwards dozens of farmers were able to visit Maine to learn from each other.

PORTLAND, Maine — Seventy percent of the coffee industry workforce are women, according to the International Women’s Coffee Alliance.

And women from around the world were able to visit Portland to discuss some of the challenges they face in the industry.

That morning caffeine fix travels a long way before it gets to consumers.

“That’s a lot of hands in your cup,” said Mary Allen Lindemann, owner of Coffee By Design.

Many of these hands belong to women.

“When it comes to our beloved coffee, women are on the front line, and [the] majority of the work [is] made by women,” said Hilina Mezgebu, a coffee farmer based in Ethiopia.

The International Women’s Coffee Alliance held a conference in Boston over the weekend, and Coffee By Design invited leaders in coffee culture in Maine to learn from each other.

“We believe in supporting women in coffee. You support the whole family, the whole community,” Lindemann said.

Men and women in the coffee industry discuss topics that affect the industry, including climate change.

“We may have to start rethinking what we buy because Arabica coffee is really impacted by climate change, and we may have to consider other species if we are to continue serving great coffee,” Lindemann added. .

More than 20 coffee growers from seven countries are visiting Maine this week.

“We just want to create opportunities for everyone working in the coffee process,” Mezgebu said.

The coffee growers will return to their home countries on Wednesday, bringing with them a wealth of knowledge.

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