Bolla Market, the New York area’s chain of high-end convenience stores, today announced it has switched to only top-quality organic, Fair Trade, and Bird Friendly specialty coffee for all its coffee offerings. ‘Bolla Gourmet Organic Coffee’ will be sold at the company’s 21 locations recently reopened post-Hurricane Sandy and located from Brooklyn to Riverhead on Long Island as well as on Staten Island. In making the switch, the company will become one of the largest convenience store chains to provide only organic, Fair Trade, and Bird Friendly shade grown coffee as its coffee offerings in the U.S.
“We are very proud to now offer delicious specialty coffee certified to strict organic, Fair Trade, and Bird Friendly shade grown standards and demonstrate that quality and convenience can go hand in hand at affordable prices at convenience stores,” said Harry Singh, President and CEO of Bolla Market. “In our quest for ever improving the quality of the products we sell, it only made sense to provide such a coffee offering in the hot beverages sector which is one our fastest-moving product sectors.”
Along with daily choices of light and dark roasts, Bolla Market coffees will include quarterly limited-time offerings starting with a pumpkin spice holiday flavor to be followed by single origin coffees such as Guatemala Huehuetenango and Ethiopia Natural Sidamo. Two 12-ounce varieties of Bolla Gourmet Organic Coffee – Bolla Organic Dark and Classic NY Light Roast – are also available to take home or to the office or to give as gifts. While all the coffee is certified to organic and Fair Trade standards, currently approximately 50 percent is also certified to the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center’s Bird Friendly standard, considered by many to be the gold standard for shade-grown coffee. This figure will increase as more coffee certified to all three standards and meeting the specialty grade of coffee becomes available.
At today’s announcement at the Bolla Market location in the Williamsburg-Greenpoint part of Brooklyn, Representative Velazquez (D-NY) (invited) joined Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, Fair Trade USA Vice President of Certification Chisara Ehiemere, and Bolla Market CEO Harry Singh to celebrate the coffee initiative, highlight Bolla’s overall program which brings high quality yet affordable beverages and food to area consumers, and celebrate the re-opening of all Bolla’s stations after Hurricane Sandy. At the same time, Santa Claus handed out free cups of the coffee to everyone visiting the market. He’ll help Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and Hempstead Town Supervisor Kate Murray do the same at the next celebration Tuesday, December 18, at the Bolla Market location in Garden City at 791 Stewart Avenue, Garden City (Long Island) 11530.
“This major conversion to Fair Trade Certified coffee represents the industry’s increasing desire to consider both people and planet when it comes to supply chain sustainability,” said Jennifer Gallegos, Director of Coffee at Fair Trade USA. “We applaud Bolla Market’s commitment to improving the lives of farming families around the world and providing North American consumers with coffee they can feel good about supporting.”
“When it comes to selling only top-quality, certified organic and Fair Trade, Bolla Market’s coffee is not your average “joe” — they go a step further and ensure that the source of their coffee doesn’t harm migratory birds,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.” Bolla Market really is ‘for the birds,’ and I mean that in the best possible way. As a proud father of an African Grey Parrot, I say bravo to Bolla and its eight Brooklyn locations for being ‘top flight’ when it comes to being eco-friendly and protecting our fine feathered friends. Here’s hoping that other retailers ‘wake up and smell the coffee’ and follow their example.”
Imports of Fair Trade Certified organic coffee grew 14 percent in 2011 to just over 72 million pounds, with an estimated market value of $700 million dollars. The annual average increase for Fair Trade Organic coffee imports was 11.5% from 2008-2011. The market for the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center’s Bird Friendly shade-grown coffee reached $5.3 million in 2011, enjoying a 29 percent average annual increase in sales in the global market from 2008-2011. The North American organic coffee market topped 1.4 billion dollars in 2009, the most recent data available, according to leading market analyst Daniele Giovannucci. The Organic Trade Association notes that sales of organic products in general reached $31.5 billion in 2011, increasing 9.5 percent in 2011.