Food In Canada

Café William sails towards sustainability with first coffee cargo sailboat

By Food in Canada Staff   

Sustainability Beverages Café William coffee Colombia Editor pick Logistics Quebec

Café William's first cargo sailboat leaves the port of Santa Marta. (CNW Group/Café William)

As part of its efforts to create a more sustainable coffee supply chain, Café William hires a sailboat to ship coffee from Colombia. The first cargo sailboat set sail from the port of Santa Marta in Colombia on December 18, bound for North America. During its 20-day voyage, the cargo sailboat carried 72,000 kilos of coffee beans on the wind, in a constant effort to run on clean energy.

The decision to opt for environmentally friendly shipping is part of the company’s drive to reduce its carbon footprint and promote sustainable practices throughout its supply chain. “It’s a commitment to sustainable transport, but also to setting a precedent for other players in the sector,” emphasizes Serge Picard, owner of Café William.

For the Sherbrooke (Quebec) roaster, this new era in maritime coffee transport represents a historic moment in the industry.

“It was vital for us to find an alternative method of transporting coffee, which largely depends on fossil-fuel cargo ships,” adds Picard. “With a first voyage as a proof of concept for the cargo sailboat, this is just the beginning of plans to supply zero-emission coffee,” he concludes.

According to Café William’s projections, the company could see a reduction of around 1 tonne of shipping-related CO2 per container, thanks to the cargo sailboat. The company hopes to increase its cargo sailboat shipping capacity to 100 per cent of the volume imported for Café William in the long term.

The beans used by Café William come from the ANEI coffee cooperative on the mountain slopes of the Sierra Nevada in northern Colombia. Coffee beans from the ANEI cooperative have been certified organic and fair trade for over 10 years.


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