We assess a roaster’s commitment to sustainability and innovation through a variety of criteria, which continue to evolve over time.  Every roaster is different in the initiatives it pursues, and there is no “right” combination of criteria that establishes sustainability and innovation. 

Below are examples of criteria we look at to assess how a roaster is exhibiting sustainable and innovative practices*. 

See our glossary for more background.

Mission & Values

Partnerships, affiliations, certifications, philanthropic commitments and other mission-driven corporate practices that promote sustainability

Farming & Processing

Sustainable and innovative farming, production and processing methods that minimize environmental damage while incentivizing experimentation


Rare origins that diversify sourcing and encourage new coffee producing regions


Fair, sustainable and traceable relationships with farmers or via importers committed to equitable practices


Low/no-emission, environmentally-friendly roasting equipment

Packaging & Retail

Minimizing materials in packaging while prioritizing biodegradable elements, as well as reusables in cafes

*All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.