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Don’t mind us, We’re just Changing the World!

We’re no strangers to the occasional comments and rolling of eyes when it comes to our “Coffee Snobbery” at CICR.  We all enjoy grabbing our coffee and taking it with us when we visit others, go on vacation, or just head for a short drive.  We’ve also become very aware that many of our customers do the same thing!

Next time you hear a friend/family member make a comment about “the coffee snob you’ve become” or joke with you about your obsession with coffee, just think about this…

The coffee is GREAT, Organic, Shade-grown, and fairly traded – and that plays a part… but how often can you carry your favorite beverage with you and know that you’re changing the world as you move about through life?

Once you’ve thought about it, offer to make them more than a coffee snob. Tell them the story and share a cup or two… or some beans. If they join our Coffee Lover’s Club, you’ll get a free shipment, but more importantly, you’ll have added another person to the arsenal of people changing lives through responsible purchasing daily!

That’s the reason we roast/ship/drink our coffee after all!

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An Ethical Coffee Meeting with Agros International

An Ethical Coffee Meeting with Agros International

This past Wednesday, Dan and I had the opportunity to visit Agros HQ in Seattle. It was a great time and they were very hospitable to us.  We were able to share some of the new things CICR has been working on.  Many new faces (for me at least) were there for the meeting.

Our customers all know of our close relationship with Agros as we talk about it all the time.  Just as it’s important for us to communicate to you the changes you create through being members of our Coffee Lover’s Club, it’s also important for us to spend time communicating our focus on ethical coffee with Agros as well.  For us, giving Agros a check from our Coffee Lover’s Club orders is only a sustainable act if we can also communicate with Agros and allow them to communicate back.  Knowing of Agros’ future goals is part of responsible giving and ethical coffee.  Allowing Agros to communicate their goals back is part of responsible receiving.  We’re so happy to have a wonderful relationship with Agros.

Dan brought his camera and took a few pictures in between making Frozen X-plosion’s and serving brewed coffee.

The table we sat at had a wonderfully colorful tablecloth.  Emily at Agros provided Dan and I very delicious sandwiches! Shannon grabbed Dan’s camera when he came out with the Frozen X-plosion’s for everyone and took a couple great pictures: Here are a few of the Agros workers enjoying Frozen X-plosion’s. The purpose of our visit was for me to share CICR’s vision for ethical coffee with Agros and “update” them on the things happening around CICR. All-in-all, we had a great time celebrating ethical coffee and sustainability.

Jeff – CICR

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If you could change the world on your own…

Why Do You Donate To Charity?

If you could change the world on your own, what would you change? Why would you change it? I ask myself that question often.

It baffles me that the new “richest man in the world” comes from a nation with many poor individuals. Using the current idea of “charity” in America, to most of us it would seem like “the right thing to do” would be for an individual with a lot to give to those with nothing. That idea, however, is exactly the opposite of what would help those in need. You see, giving to those in need is a great idea and will help them in the moment. Unfortunately, for being such a “great idea”, it actually can make things worse by causing a dependency. The long term, however, is left untouched which brings them back to the same problems they had in the beginning.

I personally give to Agros because of one reason alone. I believe in sustainability. Not just the buzz-word that seems to be tossed around. No, I believe in something much more than being a “good neighbor” or being “generous”. I’d much rather give $5 to something that will create change for more than a day than $50,000 into something that will change lives for 1 day and allow them to fall back into poverty as soon as the money is gone.

Here’s an interesting fact. For only $10,000, Agros is able to break the cycle of generational poverty for one family. Why donate to something that will grant dreams for a moment when you can contribute to something that will grant dreams for a lifetime?

It’s so easy – Purchase our ethical coffee and enjoy the wonderful flavor of creating sustainable change!


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Is it time to ReThink Your Organization’s Coffee Program?

ReThink Coffee – Sustainable Coffee Program for Organizations and Churches

We wanted to take this opportunity to announce our newest venture with Agros. ReThink coffee is a new way to look at your organization or church missions program. Instead of purchasing coffee that keeps people in a cycle of poverty and then giving money out to various missions, ReThink coffee offers a better way to do real missions work.

Many people do not understand that coffee is the second largest commodity in the world… next to oil. While we can’t make much of a difference with our oil purchases – we can all make a huge difference in our coffee purchases. If every coffee drinker were to be more responsible in their coffee purchases – poverty in many of the world’s rural areas would be overcome.

We use the term “The coffee that helps you sleep at night” because every time you purchase coffee… you know that you are helping third-world farmers on their path to sustainability. This work allows us to truly “Teach a man to fish” instead of “giving a man a fish”. When we help a family through loans and education to first own their own land this gives them the opportunity to have hope for their future and as a direct result of our support for the products they grow they now have life. When we give them a handout or a short-term fix, fear is created because they don’t know who to go to tomorrow.

As Americans, we must change our thinking from “is this the best price for coffee?” to “will this small amount of money be multiplied to create the most good in the lives of the people who earn it?”

For more information please go to and remember whenever you purchase your next package of coffee, make sure it is certified organic…shade grown…and fairly traded.

Thanks for coming along with us on this journey of responsible consumerism – and remember next time you are re-thinking your coffee selection…there is really a coffee that helps you sleep at night.

If you’re interested in getting coffee for your organization or you are looking for a new church coffee program, please visit ReThink Coffee’s website to buy ethical coffee.

Jeff – CICR


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Will Work for Change

“How can we be a part of CICR’s mission?”

This is a daily question we hear from churches and non-profit organizations. The answer is simple… Quit asking for donations and start providing something of value while telling the CICR story of “creating change while doing good“.

We have many groups that are creating latte drinks as a fundraiser and even more that are making Frozen X-plosion at fairs, festivals, and events while telling customers that they are willing to work to create change in the world around them.

Gone are the days where you can hold your hand out and be showered with money from heaven. The same principal of working for our rewards is now becoming prevalent in the charitable industry. When we work for our money, we become better stewards of where that money goes. It seems like a new idea but it’s been around forever.

We get hundreds of calls a month asking for a donation for worthy causes around the world. Wouldn’t it be great if we could get inspired to make our own money for charity!? At CICR we say “We make the fuel that runs the engine of change”. We don’t know how to go to third-world countries and teach people to get in control of their destinies but we do know how to roast great, ethical coffee and sell it. When we sell coffee, we create a few more drops of fuel that can keep the Agros engine running longer.

In closing, I’d like to make this challenge to you…

  • Let’s ALL get inspired to take on the challenge of sustainability.
  • Lets NOT create problems by being irresponsible in our purchasing in order to save a little money here and there and alleviate our consciences by throwing that extra money we saved at a charity.
  • Let’s CREATE CHANGE through responsible purchasing and sharing that same message with others.

Together, with hard work, we really can save the world!

Jeff – CICR


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Give a man a fish: Redefining Charity in the 21st Century.

give a man a fish

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. We’ve all heard this saying. We’ve also heard, “Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Here at CICR we like to take this saying a step further. Let me show you.

“Give a man a fish? What if he could own the pond?

Western culture’s concept of charity is generally “Give a man a fish.” Some take this a step further, and “Teach a man to fish.”

Here at CICR, we’re a little more entrepreneurial than that. We want to, “Teach the man to own the pond!” If a man owns the pond he not only changes his life but the lives of his children and grandchildren. Land-ownership eliminates poverty — generationally.

Owning the pond: Sustainable Agriculture.
give a man a fish

Through our partnership with Agros we can help the man own the pond. Agros provides land-ownership programs to farmers in developing countries. Now, before you ask, Agros doesn’t just give them the land. No way. That’s “Give a man a fish.” That’s not sustainable. Instead Agros provides the financing to purchase the land — at low interest or no interest at all. Within 7 years whole villages of farmers have “deed burning” parties — celebrating their status as landowners.

As Agros supporters, we’ve seen the entrepreneurial results of dollars invested in these communities. It’s amazing to see how so much can be accomplished with so little. Check out to see for yourself.

While giving a person money is generous, it is not always wise. When you help people with the proper training and give them the opportunity to own their own land -watch out! The human spirit takes over and change happens!

But What Has This Got To Do With Ethical Coffee?

Give a man a fishFor every shipment of coffee we send out we give $1 back to Agros. By giving to Agros with every shipment we tie this model of charity directly to you — the consumer. You become part of this process. With something as simple and beautiful as a cup of coffee you can be a part of redefining charity in the 21st century. With every sip you generationally change farmer’s lives. That’s ethical coffee!

That’s why we would love for you to be a part of the process. Let’s face it. You’re going to buy coffee anyway. Why not be a part of a greater movement. Don’t just write a check during the Holidays! That’s like “Give a man a fish.” Be a part of sustainable agriculture in the developing world — “Teach him to own the pond!”

Thank you for your help!

Jeff – CICR

Want to do more than “Give a man a fish?”

Click below and we’ll send you a sample of free coffee to get you started.