In order to have clarity on how to operate effectively in coffee we need to view it thought a global lens. The tapestry of people and cultures that make up our industry are rarely represented and even less often do they benefit from coffee culture. The answer to this problem is something that today's guest calls "The Sepia Coffee Project".
Martell Mason is Co-Founder of the Sepia Coffee Project(SCP), a boutique roastery based in Detroit's North End. Although a native of the city, Martell has lived a very nomadic life with years spent throughout Asia, East Africa and Scandinavia. With a BA in International Affairs and grad work specializing in Sustainability and Coffee Value Chains; Martell continues to search for ways to bridge the gap from "farm to cup" while ensuring there is greater representation of all persons involved with an emphasis placed on those of color.
In 2017, he established Arabica Trading House in Istanbul, Turkey, being one of the first specialty traders to import high-quality, transparent coffees direct from origin. Pivoting after the shocks of the pandemic, Martell arrived back in the US in 2021 and saw an opportunity to be of service to a young, yet vibrant coffee community in Detroit.
Sepia Coffee Project's mission is to make specialty coffee more accessible to underserved markets, creating a more inclusive and equitable platform for coffee consumers, industry peers and the greater community at large.
In our conversation today we are going to be learning about Martell's unique journey through coffee and how his experiences shaped his views and the work he does today to create equity and inclusion for all.
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