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."