Era of We launches digital platform to connect and democratise coffee supply chain
Sweden-based Era of We has announced the world’s first end-to-end coffee industry digital service that connects all stakeholders in the coffee supply chain – an innovative concept that the company says will result in a more equitable and sustainable business model powered by transparency and high-quality products from healthier brands. Löfbergs, one of the largest family-owned coffee roasters in the Nordic countries, will debut as the first coffee roaster on the platform.
Powered by technology and community, the Era of We platform will establish a digital global marketplace and social networking space that will promote direct relationships between coffee estates (farmers), facilitators, roasters and consumers and improve traceability of the brew through a new open ecosystem.
The platform will empower coffee growers, regardless of size, to build their own coffee brands and market directly to both roasters and consumers, thus creating a more efficient and equitable supply chain where farmers can set their own prices. Despite the boom in value downstream, coffee growers and estates continue to face an unprecedented cost-squeeze crisis that threatens global supply and threatens the livelihoods of small-scale farmers around the world. Reports suggest nearly 61% of producers sell their coffee at prices below the cost of production – leaving many farmers struggling to survive. As a result, the children of these farmers are unwilling to continue the trade, which puts coffee at a risk for labour shortage and jeopardises the world’s supply of coffee.
“We want to democratise the supply chain through transparency and collaboration,” said Martin Löfberg, founder and chairman of Era of We. “By helping farmers create individual brands based on their distinct coffee properties, Era of We will help increase the overall value of coffee estates.”
Löfberg helped develop the Era of We concept to protect the future of coffee. He spent the last decade working with coffee farmers across the major coffee producing nations in South and Central America, East Africa and Asia, and he learned first-hand the state of the industry and what’s at stake. The Era of We was created to move the industry to a balanced and more income-sustainable model for the growers and secure the long-term future of coffee production.
For roasters, the platform will unlock a range of new business opportunities through direct access to relationship building with outstanding, yet unknown, coffee estates from around the world. The platform will be a one-stop-shop to understand ongoing coffee estate and consumer trends, product innovations and prices, and bringing all of that information together to help develop and grow new opportunities – with the added benefit of marketing their own brands to a global audience.
“Roasters and roaster clients are constantly on the lookout for new and exciting coffee estates and products to enhance their own brand to give consumers the best possible experience – unique, delicious coffee with a traceable story, said Fredrik Nilsson, Acting CEO of Löfbergs. Era of We provides roasters and roaster clients with infinite new business opportunities through direct access to exceptional estates around the world as a complement to the relationships they already have in place.”
Era of We also serves as a platform for consumers who identify as coffee aficionados to discuss, learn and experience coffee in a new way.
“People care more about their coffee than ever before, and those expectations continue to rise,” Erik Hedlund, CEO of Era of We adds. “Era of We builds that bridge for consumers and allows them to enjoy their coffee with the full knowledge of its characteristics and attributes. We see the coffee industry evolving in a manner parallel to that of the wine industry – where consumers seek out the coffee of specific estates for their characteristics, pedigree and process.”
Era of We believes in a collaborative environment to enact positive change and welcomes the participation of anyone who embraces a vision to build a transparent and equitable coffee community.
Era of We will launch first in Sweden in June, then it will roll out in other countries. Roasters can gain access to a customised suite of Era of We services and capabilities via monthly subscription. Visit www.eraofwe.com to learn more.