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Restaurant Chain First Watch Revamps Coffee Program with Single-Origin Focus

First Watch photo.

Florida-based daytime restaurant chain First Watch has revamped its coffee sourcing operation, switching from offering a blend to promoting a new single-origin coffee sourced from women coffee growers in Huila, Colombia.

Dubbed Project Sunrise, the new coffee is now available in First Watch restaurants nationwide. The chain has approximately 300 locations under the First Watch name, as well as approximately 75 locations under The Egg & I name. The company says that it is for the first time offering a premium above market price for the Huila-grown coffee to support a women-led growers organization called Mujeres en Café.

“During our visit to Huila, we met groups of women in several villages who have dedicated their lives to producing great coffee. They are proud of their work and were eager to welcome us into their homes, walk us through their farms and share their stories,” Shane Schaibly, corporate chef and VP of culinary strategy for First Watch, said in an announcement of the new coffee program. “Each year, we serve more than 8 million cups of coffee in our restaurants. Through Project Sunrise, that gives us 8 million incredible opportunities to support these hard-working women and their families in Huila in 2018.”

Birmingham, Alabama-based full-service coffee company Royal Cup Coffee is roasting the Project Sunrise coffee.

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