Meet Amelia and Yosir from Old Quarter Coffee Merchants, part of the Made In Lennox team.
1. Why did you start your business?
We wanted to start a business that would create positive change in the world. We’ve been travelling in Southeast Asia since we were teenagers. We wanted to stay connected and give back to the people and the cultures that we love so much so we combined that drive with our passion for specialty coffee and created Old Quarter Coffee Merchants; a 100% Direct Trade specialty coffee roastery and café that improves farmers’ livelihoods.
2. What is the philosophy that drives it?
We’ve always believed that as a collective, humans can create real and lasting change and as consumers we have a lot of power. Coffee is the second most traded commodity on the planet, after oil. It’s also an industry with so much exploitation, so it’s a powerful force for change.
We want to demonstrate that you can still have exceptional specialty coffee while valuing coffee farmers properly and protecting the environment.
3. What’s been your biggest lesson along the way?
There hasn’t been just one big lesson but so many small lessons. Business for us is as much about growing as individuals as it is about actually growing the business. The most rewarding part is that we can live out our values and our ethics without compromising a successful business. We live in a new era of social enterprise creating change and it’s so rewarding to be a part of business for good.
4. What do you love most about your business?
Partnerships and the sense of community. Our motivation has always been to improve the lives of our farming partners overseas but our partnerships here in Australia are equally as important and rewarding. It’s all about the human connection and whether it’s a café, retail store owner or our daily customers, we are so grateful to have a network of people who support our vision.
5. Why do you think your products are good?
We offer specialty grade, exceptional coffee that tastes delicious. But more than that, this is world changing coffee. It’s coffee you can feel good about buying.