Glen Lyon Coffee is dedicated to sourcing the finest speciality beans from around the world. To us this means that all of the coffees we buy are seasonal, traceable and score a minimum of 85 out of 100 on an international scale for their flavours. We roast in small batches and check every batch for quality and consistency before sending it out. Final decisions on all the coffees we source and roast are made by our own in-house sensory professional and Q Grader.
WE WORK CLOSELY WITH FARMERS AND CO-OPERATIVES IN MORE THAN 12 COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD.
Our speciality arabica beans are typically shade grown at between 1200-2000m above sea level and hand-picked when ripe. A number of our coffees are also organically certified.
We work to form long-term, direct relationships with coffee farmers and our export partners. This means we can be confident that the amount we pay for our beans is much higher than the base rate (C Price) for coffee and significantly higher than the Fairtrade price. We travel to meet and buy coffee direct from farmers and love telling the stories of the individuals and families behind our amazing beans.
The coffee producing Foresti family from the Sul de Minas region of Brazil are a great example of this sourcing approach. In 2019 we made a long-term commitment to buy coffee from their farm, called Fazenda do Lobo (The Wolf). One of the sons, Guilherme Foresti, wrote this feedback:
“You can’t imagine how happy my family and I are with the business we have and we look forward to repeating it annually. I would like to take this moment to say that coffee prices in Brazil have not been fair a while and it is difficult for us growers to be recognised for our hard work. Business like this brings financial security for us to face the difficulties and keep fighting annually to produce great coffees and, obviously, work with partners like you.”
Glen Lyon Coffee is all about supporting our brilliant Highland community. We run our popular Roastery Cafe on Monday to Friday to provide a hub for our community to meet and catch up. Our roastery also hosts a monthly Repair Café which is dedicated to repairing and mending everything from toy cars to electronics and furniture for free. We’ve even been known to hold the occasional ‘beer share’ and barbecue as well as regular blues and folk nights.
In 2021 we set up a Coffee Academy through our sister charity Project Northern Lights which mentors school leavers from Breadalbane Academy though a programme of barista skills qualifications and work placements in cafes. Our aim is to support young people in our area into work in Scotland and beyond.
We have been committed to zero waste ever since we started roasting coffee in 2011.
Every year we carry out a carbon assessment of our business and offset our footprint by planting trees with Trees for Life in beautiful Glen Affric in Inverness-shire. Since 2018 the team has planted hundreds of native trees, including Scots Pine, Rowan and Grey Willow. We also work hard to reduce our carbon footprint and use a company electric car for local deliveries and cafes visits when possible. In 2021 we put our first bank of solar panels on the roof of our roastery.
We’re based in a remote rural area of Scotland with limited work opportunities. We are proud to provide a relaxed and supportive work environment for our staff, pay well above the living wage and offer job security with permanent contracts.
Our international team collectively have over 50 years of experience of working in the coffee industry with expertise in all aspects of the coffee supply chain including sourcing, sensory, Q grading, roasting, machinery and barista skills. When we’re not roasting, cupping or brewing you’ll most likely find us out in the hills and on the rivers of our beautiful Highland home.
The Business Purpose Commission for Scotland Report makes key recommendations to the Scottish Government to help businesses focus on more than just the bottom line for their shareholders.
We are thrilled that our roastery was chosen for a case study.