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Hot Off the Press: Parchment Vol. 002

Plans for a second run of ​Parchment​ started brewing in 2018, after a day in the field with Wycliffe Murwayi, agronomist and managing director of Sucastainability. We interviewed Wycliffe the following year, learning about his life story and his work ethos over the course of several rides through the hillsides of Mount Kenya, windows down, Irma Thomas and Ann Peebles on the radio. We believe his perspective offers an indispensable vantage on the Kenyan coffee supply chain.

Rich Gilligan, whose work you may remember from Volume 001, joined us for the ride. His shots tell a story in their own right. We’re so lucky to have him in our circle. The first five hundred copies of ​Parchment​ will come with a limited-edition postcard featuring one of our favorite photos from the issue.

We’re equally thrilled to have an essay from Mie Hansen, Sucafina’s Kenya country manager. Her message on grower-roaster relationships—a topic at the heart of Parlor’s sourcing philosophy—speaks to a unique opportunity for sustainable economic growth in Kenya, but also applies to all coffee-growing regions.

There’s a common thread among these pieces: a hope for meaningful dialogue between producers and buyers, rooted in a shared language. We couldn’t agree more. In a long-term relationship, part of the dialogue among roasters focused on great coffees will necessarily involve the connection between cup quality and farming practices. And yet few farmers are afforded the opportunity to taste their own coffees, let alone explore the flavor spectrum to which specialty coffee roasters refer.

Wycliffe and Mie have been working on a new project along just those lines, and we’ve decided to do our part to help them with their efforts. To that end, 100% of the sales from Volume 002 will sponsor a Sucastainability-led, SCA-certified quality training seminar for young Kenyan coffee farmers, focusing on sensory development, basic barista skills, soil quality assessment, and specialty coffee processing techniques. It’s the least we can do.