Here at Commuter Comforts, we pride ourselves on our friendly and direct relationship with our customers, and Mukilteo Coffee Roasters, our ground coffee and coffee bean provider, is no different. The owners and founders of Mukilteo, Gary Smith and Beth Korvin Smith have direct relationships with their coffee famers, ensuring that every cup of coffee we sell helps support not only our community, but the communities where it was grown.
Mukilteo Coffee Roasters began in 1983 by Gary as a small coffee cart and has grown into a coffee import/export, roasting and cafe business. Beth joined in 1992, loving the hands-on relationship Mukilteo allowed her to have with not only the coffee, but the growers and farmers. In fact, many of the relationships with the coffee farmers are into the second generation; Beth and Gary now talk to the kids of the original farmers who have taken over the family business of farming.
Because Mukilteo is farm direct, each year Gary, Beth and other Mukilteo Coffee Roasters employees travel to Costa Rica and other Central American countries during harvest to see the crops and practices, and ask each farm what they need, and how can Mukilteo be an equal partner in the farm's success. Sometimes this is paying the farmers higher than market price for their beans, other times it is giving back to the communities where the farm is located. Last year Mukilteo helped build a park for children in Santa Elena, Costa Rica.
Mukilteo also gives back to its local community of Whidbey Island and the greater Pacific Northwest. They provide coffee as often as possible to local non-profits and provide financial donations to the schools, arts community and others. "We are here because of our community and customers," says Beth. "Giving back is the least we can do."
For more information on Mukilteo Coffee Roasters, please visit their website: http://mukilteocoffee.com/
Many loyal customers of Commuter Comforts have fond memories of running to catch the boat, pausing long enough to grab a coffee and one of Hollis's famous 8-grain Pullaparts. In fact, in the mid-1980s -- long before breakfast breads and pastries became as popular as they are today -- Commuter Comforts was selling over 750 Pullaparts a week.
Today, these Pullaparts are still available, along with many other delicious items from Farm Kitchen, co-founded and owned by Hollis Fay and Anne Thatcher. You can now find Farm Kitchen's cookie packs, short bread cookies, sweet breads and gluten-free granola at the Commuter Comforts kiosk. All are made onsite in the commercial kitchen located in a renovated barn on the 18-acre organic farm located on Port Gamble Road northeast of Poulsbo, six miles beyond the Agate Pass Bridge.
Farm Kitchen has done more for the community than just satisfying Pullapart cravings. They support local schools through donations for school auctions and host community events like the monthly First Saturday Breakfast. Many from Bainbridge join friends over the family-style meal, and often ride their bikes to Farm Kitchen for this Breakfast. Many business meetings, retreats, weddings and other community events are held on site each year.
For more information on what Farm Kitchen offers, event space and community gatherings, please visit their website at www.farmkitchen.com
Sustainable Business Consulting
We at Commuter Comforts have a goal of providing the very best coffee with the very best service - and doing it in a way that minimizes any negative effects on the environment. Because of this goal, we brought in Sustainable Business Consulting to help us look at our operations, the products we sell and our packaging - as well as how to tell our sustainability story and help connect with our community both online and in person.
Founded by Kevin Wilhelm in 2004, Sustainable Business Consulting is a leading local sustainability consulting firm that helps organizations realize the business value of integrating sustainability by developing and implementing strategies to save money, increase brand value, reduce risk and to engage stakeholders and employees. In addition to Commuter Comforts, they have worked with 100+ companies in 37 industries including many leading Pacific Northwest brands.
SBC believes in walking the talk and strives to be a leader in both environmental and social sustainability in their office environment. "All employees, contractors and interns receive an ORCA card, and the company pays for personal carbon offsets as well for all full-time employees", says Kevin. In addition, All SBC employees are encouraged to become involved in their community and are paid to volunteer up to 24 hours of time annually.
"We work and live in a beautiful place," says Kevin, "and we want our employees to enjoy it." Because of this, all employees are reimbursed if they purchase a National Parks Pass, a Discover Pass or SnoPark Pass. In addition to regular holidays and time off, SBC employees are encouraged to take a paid "ski" day or "kayak" day. "We believe in hard work," says Kevin, " but we also believe we can have fun while doing it."
There is no doubt that tackling issues such as climate change and trying to integrate sustainability into business is tough work and is truly our generation’s greatest challenge. We are thrilled to have worked with SBC in helping us meet and exceed our goal towards sustainability.
For more information on Sustainable Business Consulting, please visit: www.sustainablebizconsulting.com