Coffee farmers are most often underpaid. Paying farmers less than a subsistent wage for their coffee is an unethical business practice. It's exploitation. Paying farmers a living wage is one part of our core distinctive (that being people, place, coffee...). Buying direct from the farm is a way to ensure a living wage.
Over the last two years of operating our fledgling espresso bar, we are beginning to have a good handle on what to expect in terms of sales growth, costs, and profitability. As we move through re-opening and when we begin to confidently say "post-pandemic" we still have a lot to learn about the new normal. The living wage goals are a significant contributor to the decision to raise prices over the next couple of months.