Holy Grounds upholds ethical values while sourcing locally


Caleb Geer

Barista and Holy Grounds manager Eden Moad pours a cup of coffee. Holy Grounds has new locally sourced beans this semester.

by Caleb Geer, Staff Reporter

Not only does Holy Grounds serve up great coffee to students and professors alike, but they are now striving to make sure that their coffee beans are ethically produced. 

When something like coffee is considered fair trade, it means the producers or farmers contributing to the coffee beans are treated fairly and not exploited. This can drastically help developing countries that have long been abused for their resources. 

“Part of our mission has always been to be as fair trade as possible,” said Holy Grounds barista and manager Eden Moad. 

This summer, Moad took on the challenge of looking for certified fair trade flavored coffee, which is hard to find. The previous flavored coffee in use at Holy Grounds was fair trade, but it was not certified. This meant that the shop needed to change suppliers. 

Students haven’t noticed a difference in the taste of the new coffee used by the shop. 

“I mean, I think it’s good; I don’t really see a problem with them switching what kind of coffee they’re selling,” said sophomore Shawn Howard.

Moad worked with the Smith Chapel administrative assistant, Debbie Roff, on prices so as not to take on something that would be too much of a burden for the small nonprofit coffee shop. 

“With COVID, this past year was very, very strange for Holy Grounds because there would be whole days where there would be nobody in here,” Moad said. 

Through the search, Moad was able to connect with Friedrichs Coffee Roasters out of Des Moines. Through Friedrichs, Moad found fair trade espresso beans that would not have to travel as far as the previous supplier’s. Because of the convenience of how close Friedrichs is located, many other varieties will be purchased from them. Not only will the purchase of beans become easier, but Friedrichs will be able to accommodate enough of Holy Grounds’ needs that they will become the main supplier. This simplifies Holy Grounds’ distribution which was another of Moad’s goals.

Price to the consumer is not expected to change anytime soon as prices are adjusted bi-annually, typically at the ends of semesters. 

“I can’t guarantee anything, but as far as we know now, I don’t think the price has been a burden on us,” Moad said. 

“Over the summer, our most popular flavor was white chocolate raspberry,” said Moad. 

The supplier that Holy Grounds used before Friedrichs was discontinuing the flavor. By switching to Friedrichs, Holy Grounds will be able to continue to provide the customer-favorite flavored coffee. 

Customers can look forward to the return of the seasonal special, the “Whispering Maple,” on Oct. 22-24 in honor of homecoming week. It is typically offered as either a latte or cappuccino and can be ordered iced or hot.