Richland Distilling Company is located in Richland, GA. The owners Erik and Karin Vonk and master distiller Jay McCain are helping put Richland on the map by making authentic, quality products. Garden and Gun calls Richland Rum “the smooth amber liquid that had brought new life to this town.” (Find the whole article here.) It is a family-owned business and makes Richland Rum exclusively.
Richland Distilling Company will be one of our stops on Saturday, Nov. 9 during the Southwest GA Tour de Farm 2013 bike ride. We will get the opportunity to taste Richland Rum and to take a tour. Tickets for Tour de Farm are on sale now! Register today to ensure your spot in the ride.
Richland Rum is made by hand and is done so day-by-day all in one area. They grow their own cane sugar at Vennebroek Estate there in Richland and distill, age, and bottle their Rum all in the same place. The process of making their Rum involves fermenting, distilling, and aging in oak barrels, where it is matured for at least one year with some longer.
Richland Rum only contains two ingredients! Those ingredients are either sugar cane juice or premium sugar cane syrup and water. This means that it is all natural and contains no preservatives, artificial aromas, coloring, additives, or chemical enhancements. The fermentation recipe used to make Richland Rum also plays an important role in contributing to the all natural taste of the quality Rum.
To learn more about Richland Distilling Company and Richland Rum, check out these articles:
If you haven’t already done so, be sure to check out Richland Rum’s website.
We believe White Oak Pastures is a gem in Southwest Georgia, and we are so thrilled to have them featured on this year’s Southwest Georgia Tour de Farm. Primarily a livestock farm and processing facility, White Oak stands out nationally for its sustainable farming practices and commitment to land stewardship, animal husbandry and organics. Plus, the folks who work there are just so darn innovative, creative and committed to doing the right thing for their community, the land they live on and the animals that feed them.
We promise a fantastic tour and exceptional supper on Friday, Nov. 8, where the food will literally be born, raised, processed, prepared and consumed on-site. (Thank you so much, White Oak!)
Supper-only tickets are available for $30 online at http://tdf2013.eventbrite.com/. or at Cafe Campesino Coffee House and Roastery in Americus. Full event tickets include the Meat & Greet Supper, as well as two days of food-and-farm-oriented cycling in Southwest Georgia. The entire event is a fundraiser for non-profits Georgia Organics and Sumter Cycling. Learn more about Tour de Farm and purchase tickets online. Read more about White Oak below!
Just why is White Oak Pastures so cool? Here’s some stuff that stands out for us:
-Forty percent of the energy needs of White Oak’s on-site processing facilities COMES FROM THE SUN! (yeah, there’s a big solar panel on that farm)
-White Oak makes bio-diesel on-site to power its farm tractors
-On-site commercial meat processing hardly ever happens on farms. In fact, only 2 farms do this in the U.S. White Oak Pastures is one of them.
-Nothing goes to waste- blood, bones and viscera are all broken down to make compost.
-In 2011, White Oak complemented its red-meat processing facility by opening up a USDA-inspected poultry abattoir and now raise and slaughter chicken, ducks, geese, guineas, and turkeys on-site.
-There’s a certified organic vegetable farm that produces food for CSA customers across Southwest Georgia.
Still Curious? Keep reading at some of the links below:
We invite you to join Café Campesino and our sister company Sweetwater Organic Coffee, along with local birding enthusiasts for a ten day trip to Guatemala from Feb 7 to Feb 16, 2014. Our Coffee and Culture Tours focus on understanding coffee production in the countries where coffee is grown. We introduce participants to more than just how coffee is produced, but also to the positive impact that fair trade and organics bring to small scale farmers and their family economic development. As we meet farmers and their families, we understand customs, culture, geography, economics, language and family life in the country visited.
Guatemala is a delight for birders. As we travel to the places where shade grown coffee is produced, and even to the market cities where coffee beans are processed, travelers are in the midst of a range of micro climates that support a wide variety of bird habitat. Our balanced itinerary allows us time to focus very specifically on coffee on certain days and birds on other days. At certain times we may incorporate both in a day’s activity. We may also find certain days when the birders hike in one direction while the coffee hounds head in another. Some of the birds that we are likely to encounter are unique to Guatemala while others are migratory birds that you may see in North America in a certain season and in Guatemala in the colder temps of a North American winter. The value of shade grown crops, a rainforest canopy and organic methods are a boon to the health of all birds and this will be demonstrated.
Please join us. The dates are February 7th to 16th and you may choose to extend for other birding, language school, or other Guatemala tourism. Extending is at your own separate expense. The cost is $75 per day plus your air ticket and travel insurance. So the ten day trip is $750 plus airfare (which you will coordinate on your own). This includes in-country transportation, meals, snacks and water each day, and accommodations (based on shared rooms). Single supplements will not always be available and will have an added cost.
Interested in Registering? Call us or email.
AMERICUS (August 22, 2013) – Café Campesino is one of six companies that was recognized as a “Small Business Rock Star” in Atlanta on Monday by the Georgia Economic Developers Association (GEDA) and the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD). Nearly 50 companies competed for the title, which lauded outstanding, unique and impactful small businesses in the state of Georgia.
“It’s important to honor companies whose best practices help set the state apart as a nurturing environment for small business,” said Mike Pennington, president of GEDA, which collaborated with the GDEcD to host this first-time event that highlighted innovative entreprenuers across the state.
“Entrepreneurs find where there’s a need and work to fill that need,” said Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, who spoke at the Aug. 19 luncheon at the Renaissance Atlanta Midtown Hotel that honored the winners.
A local need for sustainably sourced, high quality, organic coffee prompted Bill Harris to start Café Campesino in 1998. Mr. Harris accepted the award for Café Campesino on Monday and highlighted its work to honor small farmers “who work harder than any of us here” as the driving force behind his business. He also noted that the company’s simple business philosophy – to “treat others as you would like to be treated” was at that heart of everything Café Campesino does.
“We are a company that measures its success based on its relationship with the three P’s– profits, people and the planet,” Mr. Harris said to the more than 100 public officials and econonomic developers attending the luncheon, who included newly appointed Department of Community Affairs Commissioner Gretchen Corbin, as well as Lt. Gov. Cagle.
Deeply committed to developing small business in the Americus and Sumter County region, Mr. Harris expressed his gratitude to the state and local entities that have provided Cafe Campesino with support along the way. He cited the Department of Community Affairs, the Americus-Sumter Co. Chamber of Commerce, the Americus Sumter Payroll Development Authority, South Georgia Technical College, the Georgia Department of Economic Development and the City of Americus as being strong supporters of Café Campesino.
Café Campesino also underscored the importance of these entities and the tremendous opportunities for entrepreneurship it sees in small towns across Georgia during the Aug. 14-16 Georgia Downtown Association conference it attended in Savannah where it served on a panel that highlighted craft industry and agritourism in Georgia downtowns. Pladd Dott, a Statesboro-based music company and guitar manufacturer and the Savannah Bee Co., a retailer and wholesaler of sustainably sourced honey and skin-care products, were also on the GDA craft industry panel.
Other “Small Business RockStars” winners included Laurie Jo’s Southern Style Canning, located near Moultrie; FactoryMation of Canton; Azalea Health of Valdosta; Restaurant Interiors of Jasper and Atlanta Light Bulbs of Tucker.
Nema Etheridge of Café Campesino, Angela Westra, director of chamber development, Americus Sumter County Chamber of Commerce and Mr. and Mrs. Bill Harris Sr. accompanied Mr. Harris to the award luncheon.
Small Business RockStars is a collaboration between GEDA and the GDEcD to recognize outstanding, unique and impactful businesses with fewer than 50 employees across the state.
About Café Campesino
Cafe Campesino is a fair trade, organic coffee company that is based in Americus, Georgia. It was founded in 1998 after Americus resident Bill Harris traveled to Guatemala with Habitat for Humanity. Today, Café Campesino sources coffee from small-scale farmer living in more than 10 countries around the world and sells freshly roasted coffee to customers across Georgia and the United States. It is headquartered in Americus where it operates a roasting facility and coffee shop. www.cafecampesino.com
Celebrating 50 years of service excellence, the Georgia Economic Developers Association is the leading professional organization advancing Georgia’s economic vitality. GEDA is a non-profit association of professionals, volunteers and supporters. The association provides networking and professional development opportunities for its members, and supports public policies that promote quality job creation and sustainable economic development throughout the state. For more information, visit www.geda.org.
The Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) plans, manages and mobilizes state resources to attract new business investment to Georgia, drive the expansion of existing industry and small business, locate new markets for Georgia products, inspire tourists to visit Georgia, and promote the state as a top destination for arts events and film, music and digital entertainment projects. Visit www.georgia.org.
Join us for another weekend of cycling through beautiful Southwest Georgia!
This year we will return to Koinonia Farm and spend an evening at White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Ga.
This is a NOT TO BE MISSED event for food-lovers, organics enthusiasts and people who like exploring the world on bikes.
Check our Facebook page this summer for ticket information.
See pics from last year to convince you that you want to attend this year’s ride
FARM DOCUMENTARY SCREENING AND COMMUNITY GARDEN LAUNCH IN AMERICUS, APRIL 30
AMERICUS, Ga.- Café Campesino joins a series of locations around the world screening the critically acclaimed documentary, “GROW!” that showcases the work and enthusiasm of 20 young farmers across Georgia who are energizing the local food movement. Film-makers Owen Masterson and Christine Anthony will be on-site for the Tuesday, April 30th screening in Americus that will take place in Café Campesino’s newly established community garden- the first of its kind in Sumter County.
The public is encouraged to attend this free event and bring a picnic, blankets and a general curiosity about community gardens, organics and Georgia’s local food movement. Garden gates open at 6:30 p.m. Mingling and information-sharing begins at 7 p.m. and an outdoor screening of “GROW!” will begin at sunset, about 8:15 p.m.
A 60 minute documentary, “GROW!” shares the stories of young people across Georgia who have chosen the unlikely but energizing career paths of becoming small-scale farmers. “GROW!” highlights young farmers living in Atlanta, Blairsville, Chattahoochee Hill Country, Mansfield, Ranger, Savannah, Winterville, Pine Mountain and other locations across the state. Released in 2011, “GROW!” has received worldwide critical acclaim including 2011 Best American Documentary at the Rome International Film Festival, 2011 Official Selection at the Savannah Film Festival, 2012 Best Feature at the Colorado Environmental Film Festival, 2012 Official Selection at the Reel Earth Environmental Film Festival of New Zealand and the 2013 Earth Award of the Cinema Verde Film Festival.
The film screening will be the first held in Café Campesino’s newly established Community Garden that offers 14 raised-bed plots to individuals in Americus who either do not have access to land or sunlight to grow their own food. Though still in its nascent stages, the Café Campesino Community Garden is meant to be a gathering spot for gardeners of all skill-levels and backgrounds who are eager to learn more about organic farming and local food. During Tuesday’s 7-8 p.m. information-sharing hour, local experts on composting, beekeeping, organic gardening, chickens and heritage-breed livestock will be in attendance to answer questions, promote discussion and share their knowledge with the general public.
Join us at 725 Spring Street in Americus, Georgia, on Tuesday, April 30, or call with questions in advance: 229-924-2468. Watch the trailer or learn about “GROW!” at growmovie.net
CONTACT: Nema Etheridge
Roya- or coffee “rust”- is an orange fungus that grows on the leaves of coffee plants, causing them to whither and fall off. It reduces coffee production and eventually causes plants to die, and it is quickly spreading through Central America. We witnessed the effects of roya during our trip to Guatemala in January, and shortly after our return, the Guatemalan government issued a national coffee emergency, anticipating some 70 percent of its 2013 coffee harvest to be affected by the fungus. Bill, who on the trip visited the same small-scale farm of Chel-based Pedro Pacheco Bop that he visited in 2011, saw a drastic change. “I was shocked. It was not the lush green coffee forest that we saw 2 years ago. His farm was noticeably different.” Roya has affected other coffee growing regions in the past, most notably devastating coffee crops of the British Ceylon (or modern-day Sri Lanka) in the 1800s, and later affecting coffee crops in Indonesia and Brazil and some areas of Central America and the Caribbean as recent as 30-40 years ago. Scientists remain undecided on what is causing the outbreak. An increasingly changing climate- where longer periods of wet and warmer temperatures are reaching high-altitude coffeelands- is one culprit. But John Vandermeer, a scientist at the University of Michigan, believes that an ecosystem damaged by the excessive use of pesticides and fungicides is to blame. For example, a white halo fungus, which has helped to keep coffee rust in-check, has been nearly eradicated through chemical applications in Central America that have also killed off the insects that help germinate it. Coffee industry professionals throughout Central America are looking to get the fungus under control, and small-scale farmers like Pacheco Bop will turn to his cooperative, the Asociacion Chajulense, for expertise and technical help on how to deal with roya. Bill sees this as a critically important role that the cooperative plays. “The coop has technical advisers on staff who are working on this right now,” he said. “And this is an example of another moment where being a part of a larger organization and working together and collaborating is the best way for the farmer to get through this,” he said. The effects of a diminished harvest will be especially bitter for the coffee farmer this year, as the price of coffee has dropped from last year’s near 15-year high. “They’re not getting nearly the amount of supply, so they’re getting affected by the negative trend of production and the negative trend of pricing,” he said. “Just when it looks like it is getting good, then watch out… such is the life of the farmer.” Café Campesino will continue to be committed to learning more about roya and responding to the needs of the cooperatives at origin. “The best thing we can do is support whatever decisions they make,” said Bill.
Cafe Campesino Guatemala Tour 2013
Photos, video and article by Scott Umstattd
In January of 2013, I had the opportunity to go with Cafe Campesino on a cooperative tour of Guatemala. Sure, we all know Cafe Campesino makes great coffee and that this great coffee is traded in a way the best serves the farmers who nurture and grow the beans, but to actually go out and meet the people in this supply chain made a tremendous difference in how I view an already superior product and business model.
The group, about ten of us depending on which day we’re talking about, arrived in Antigua, Guatemala, and soon after we began to learn more about this entire fair-trade process. We met with members of the Manos Campesinos Cooperative in Guatemala City to see how coffee beans are sorted and stored in their gigantic warehouse. An interesting note here- security at the warehouse was very tight, as there was literally millions of dollars of green coffee beans being stored. Not sure if you heard about this, but up in Canada a few months back millions of dollars of maple syrup was stolen from a warehouse. There is value in these raw commodities, so securing the beans is actually a very important thing to consider. We also learned that there is often armed security riding alongside and on the large commercial trucks that transport tons of coffee beans across Guatemala. The thought of bean security had never entered my mind prior to taking this trip. Already on day one, I was learning what it takes to make my daily cups of coffee possible. Also on day one, we had a chance to cup Guatemalan coffee. If you don’t know what cupping is all you need to do is think about how wine aficionados taste, swirl and then spit out wine into a cup to make comments like “It tastes woody with hints on berry and smoke.” or whatever wine tasters say after they spit out their wine. Cupping coffee is pretty much the same thing. People with sophisticated pallets taste the coffee and say things like, “It tastes woody with a hint of berry and smokiness.” If you’ve never cupped or seen coffee being cupped, it makes for quite a sight (and sound). You have to forcibly suck in the coffee from a spoon and this sucking sound, that allows just the right amount of air to come in with the coffee, when repeated over and over again, can be quite funny. Already, just on day one, I had learned two things.