Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
The Single Life Just Got More Delicious…Don Francisco’s Single-Serve Makes Its Debut

By Michael Gaviña, fourth generation Gaviña family roaster and licensed Q Grader for F. Gaviña & Sons, Inc.

As a coffee roaster and licensed Q Grader (a.k.a. coffee sommelier) licensed by the Coffee Quality Institute), I get asked all sorts of questions about coffee – from recipes and coffee trends to more technical roasting and grinding questions. But most recently, my closest friends had been asking me something very specific: where are your “k cups”? (or single-serve coffees as they are also known). They are already fans of our coffee, but wanted to know when they would finally be able to get this version of their favorite Don Francisco’s Family Reserve coffees. Well, I am very excited to share that after a long and rigorous process to ensure the best taste and quality, we’ve launched Don Francisco’s Family Reserve Single-Serve Coffees! Available in four of the top-selling flavors including French Roast, Breakfast Blend, Kona Blend, and Vanilla Nut, these are sold in 12-count packs (SRP $8.49) at Gelson’s, Stater Brothers, Save Mart, and Raley’s in California, as well as in Shaw’s Supermarkets in Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

Single-Serve coffee drinkers are a growing market segment. In fact, according to the National Coffee Drinking Trends 2011 report, the second most popular brewing method in the U.S. is single cup, 76 percent of which occurs at home. The study also indicates that most consumers who currently own or will purchase a single-serve machine will continue to use his or her previous brewers at home. So, it seems like people are looking to mix it up when it comes to their home brewing needs.

We took our time to develop the single-serve pods because we didn’t want to sacrifice quality. There was no magic trick to getting that perfect grind and roast, just plenty of quality testing. It took all eight in-house Q Graders months of tasting and tweaking the coffee, but in the end, I think we perfected it. We wanted to ensure that these coffees would provide the same full flavor and great taste that consumers expect from us and the kind of quality that my grandfather Don Francisco Gaviña would be proud of.

Now, I hope you will have a chance to enjoy Don Francisco’s Family Reserve Single-Serve coffees as part of your daily coffee experience. Please check it out at your local stores and tell us what you think.

For more information on Don Francisco’s Single-Serve Coffees visit Facebook.com/DonFranciscos, or go to www.donfranciscos.com

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
The Birth of Artissimo By: Michael Gaviña

I recently celebrated a birthday and as usual I gathered with friends and family to celebrate. Birthdays are a big deal in our family and blowing out the candles on a birthday cake in good company (and some of our signature Don Francisco’s coffee of course) is not only a tradition, but a mandatory event.

For me, birthdays are also a good time to reflect on the past and plan for the future. My family began growing coffee more than a century ago, planting their very first coffee tree in 1870. Since then, our family has been involved in every aspect of coffee preparation including farming, milling, importing and roasting. Today, I am proud to represent the fourth generation of F. Gaviña & Sons, Inc. coffee roasting legacy and I am excited to be able to continue in their footsteps and be part of the next evolution of coffee.

In recent years we have seen a trend towards super premium coffee consumption made more affordable by brewing at home. It seems that although folks are paying special attention to their budgets in these tough economic times, they don’t want to give up taste and quality. In fact, a recent article on the Wall Street Journal blog “The Source” notes that many coffee fans are consuming the beverage at home rather than paying marked-up coffee shop prices. In response, many coffee brands such as Don Francisco’s Coffee are focusing on this premium “brew at home” coffee market.

This is also why this month, we have yet another birthday to celebrate as we introduce our new Artissimo coffee, which takes super premium coffee to another level. As an extension of our super premium Family Reserve line, which we proudly launched in 2010, Artissimo coffee was created using the best Arabica beans from micro-lots in Costa Rica’s Central Valley, hand selected by me personally.

I encourage all our fans and supporters to try this medium to dark roast, which is so exclusive that it will only be available in specially-designed 9-ounce bags (SRP $5.99) at Albertsons grocery stores in California and Bashas grocery stores in Arizona. Artissimo offers a clean cup with a pleasant aftertaste, and unlike standard Costa Rican coffees, provides a heavier body that’s particularly evident in its milk chocolate finish.

To mark the launch of Artissimo, Don Francisco’s Coffee is launching “Artissimo’s Cooking and Coffee Sweepstakes” where one Grand Prize winner will win a three-day trip to a city of his/her choice to participate in a MasterChef course at the prestigious Le Cordon Bleu culinary school, as well as $500 in spending cash. For more details on the sweepstakes, please visit www.artissimosweeps. and make sure to follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DonFranciscos.

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
Don Francisco’s Coffee Gets Inspired for the Orange You Happy to Erase MS Campaign

For the third year in a row, our company has partnered with the Nancy Davis Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis, an organization dedicated to the treatment and ultimate cure for Multiple Sclerosis (MS), as well as building awareness of a disease that affects over 2.5 million worldwide.

In support of the organization’s national “Orange You Happy to Erase MS” awareness campaign, which coincides with MS awareness month celebrated in May. We‘re proud to be bringing back the limited edition Blend to Erase MS coffee, created exclusively for the Nancy Davis Foundation.

The 10-ounce bag of Don Francisco’s Blend to Erase MS ground coffee will feature the “Orange you Happy to Erase MS” logo and be sold online throughout the month of May or until supplies last at http://www.shopdonfrancisco.com and twenty percent (20%) of gross online sales will be donated to the Nancy Davis Foundation. In addition, Don Francisco’s is donating 100 limited edition coffee bags which will be sold at the organization’s annual gala and 100% of those proceeds will go to the foundation.

If you happen to be in Los Angeles on May 18, I encourage you to attend the Nancy Davis Foundation’s 19th Annual Race to Erase MS Gala, a star-studded event that raises millions for the cause every year. Don Francisco’s will also take part by providing coffee for the gala, symposium, silent auction and event gift bags.

Let’s all get inspired this May and brew up some good in support of this great organization, which helps thousands of people every year.

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
F. Gavina & Sons, Inc. Focuses on Education and Gives Back to Coffee Growing Communities with New Program in El Salvador

I just returned from my trip to El Salvador. Everyone knows how much I love to visit the countries and communities where we buy our coffee. I had the honor of visiting El Salvador to introduce our new “Grounds for Caring” project that advocates and encourages growth by providing positive impacts on education and the environment along with empowering local youth and families. We partnered with ECOM Foundation, Farmer Brothers Coffee, and The Borgonovo Enterprise Group to launch a three-year project in effort to re-develop two schools in El Salvador.

The trip to El Salvador gave me the opportunity to continue pushing awareness to countries that need a voice. In the past, we took the same initiative to Mexico and Nicaragua. Here, we aimed at improving the local schools infrastructures and launched remote learning facilities in partnership with Mexico’s top University, Tecnológico de Monterrey. These remote learning centers are innovative local educational centers, which made it accessible for members to complete their grade school, high school, undergraduate and/or graduate studies via online education.

This experience has unified our company and together we will continue to provide a great tasting cup of coffee, by reinforcing and nourishing coffee’s sustainability at every stage.

It brings me great happiness to be directly involved in a program that helps enrich the quality of education and services available at these local schools in El Salvador. Not only are we providing an educational foundation, but also encouraging emotional support to the faculty and students at these schools. Being able to leave our footprint in these countries gives me great joy to know that we are following a legacy that my grandfather created when he founded the company.

Be sure to check out this great video from my trip!

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
Hispanic Americans Rank the Most Inspired Group in Don Francisco’s Coffee Inspiration Survey

For many years people have been celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, and like many I have also been captivated by recognizing our history and present contributions to the world. Most recently, we commissioned a nationally representative survey to understand and measure how, when, where and why average Americans find inspiration in their daily lives. The study was the first of its’ kind to measure American’s current state of inspiration.

Our study revealed that Hispanics lead the way in being the most inspired of any group surveyed. In recognizing Hispanic Heritage Month, the result gives great optimism to the Hispanic community given high levels of inspirations in the midst of an unsteady economy.

Other interesting conclusions we found, Hispanics are most inspired by their immediate family and relatives. In addition, among professions, Hispanics are more likely to say they are inspired because of a new career or business opportunity, a desire to improve or change their lives, and because of the beautiful environment or weather the live in.

I encourage coffee lovers to join in on the celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month and to continue being inspired everyday by family, friends, and careers through a cup of Don Francisco’s Coffee. To learn more about our coffee, visit www.donfranciscos.com, follow @donfranciscos on Twitter or “like” the Don Francisco’s fan page on Facebook.

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
Coffee Drinkers Rank the Most Inspired in Recent Don Francisco’s Coffee Inspiration Survey

Like many of you, my typical day consists of conference calls, deadlines, meetings and the most important part of my day, coffee breaks! Most recently, we commissioned a survey to find out what inspires Americans on a daily basis and we found out some interesting factoids about coffee and inspiration.

In the study, we found that Americans are generally inspired throughout the day and typically find moments of inspiration during their coffee breaks. Additionally, the study showed that 4 out of 10 people would be willing to give up alcoholic beverages, chocolate and going to the movies rather than part with their java. And yet, there have to be some limits to this devotion. The survey showed, not surprisingly, that respondents were less likely to give up their car, job or sex for coffee.

On another interesting note, we found that coffee drinkers are most inspired by their immediate family, mostly mothers and daughters, followed by friends. When it comes to professions, the majority of Americans find teachers (73%) to be the most inspiring, while celebrities (23%), professional athletes (33%) and politicians (17%) trailed in last place.

Regardless of whether it’s a specific moment, or a specific person that inspires you most, we can all agree that it’s important to have that break from our daily stress! What better way to get your daily serving of inspiration than with a cup of Don Francisco’s Coffee! We want to hear from you! Visit us on Facebook and tell us about an inspiring java moment you’ve had recently!

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
Don Francisco’s Coffee and Orange You Happy to Erase MS campaign

By Michael Gavina

As a coffee lover myself, I particularly like creating new blends and roasts right here in our plant, especially when they are for great causes. Most recently, we launched an exclusive blend in support of the Nancy Davis Foundation, a great organization that works to eradicate multiple sclerosis, a disease which affects over 2.5 million worldwide.  In the United States, approximately 400,000 people have been diagnosed with MS.

 For the second year in a row, our company has partnered with the Nancy Davis Foundation’s ‘Orange You Happy to Erase MS’ campaign and for the first time introduced the limited-edition coffee “Blend to Erase MS”. The bold roast features a hint of smoky, caramel, dark chocolate flavors, and smells amazing!

 This year Nancy Davis and I were on hand at our roasting plant to seal the first official “Blend to Erase MS” coffee bag as it came off the assembly line. To coincide with MS awareness month celebrated in May; we donated twenty percent of gross sales of the limited edition coffee to the Nancy Davis Foundation, which was sold via http://www.shopdonfrancisco.com.

 My family and I are extremely honored to support this inspiring cause and invite you to try this delicious limited edition coffee.  Not only will you be sipping on a great cup of coffee but you will also be supporting a wonderful cause.  I can’t think of a better way to start my morning, than a cup of “Blend to Erase MS.”

 PS:  I was nervous about meeting Nancy Davis, but the nervousness dissipated soon after our introduction.  Her friendliness made me feel comfortable and at ease as if I were talking to a dear friend. I admire her passion and dedication to her organization!  We share that passion and dedication as it is important to achieve any goal whether it is to raise awareness for a cause or a business.  This is a perfect partnership!

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Under Don Francisco's Coffee Blog
Michael Gaviña

Michael GaviñaSo I guess before I start picking topics to blog about, I should probably introduce myself. My name is Michael Gaviña, and I am the fourth generation of a coffee family. I’ve worked with the family every summer since I was about 12 years old. In 2002 I completed my undergraduate studies in business administration and joined the family fulltime. Since then, I have become a certified Q-Grader* and currently sit on the board of directors for the Pacific Coast Coffee Association (PCCA).

I wasn’t always sure if the coffee industry would be where I would dedicate my life, but as it turns out the industry (culture, people, locations, flavors, etc.) is itself, addicting. It’s an electrifying business where valuable information you receive about the harvest of a specific origin can become archaic within 24 hours. If you consider yourself an extrovert, this is the business for you. It is claimed that as much as 8% of the world’s population is somehow involved with coffee.

How can I not mention the beautiful coffee growing countries? The coffee cherry, where the coffee bean is derived from, is like a careful tourist who has sought out and nested in some of the world’s most desirable geographical locations.

The history! Coffee started as the main cash crop for many of the countries that still harvest and to this day is the main source of income for millions of farmers. Some of those farmers have been in business for generations and coffee is all they know.

These are just a few of the many reasons why I love this business. If you have the same passion I do for coffee or are just interested in learning more about this complex commodity, I welcome you to join me in this journey of illumination.

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