College students are addicted to a LOT of things, from playing video console games and chatting online into the wee hours of the night to downloading music and ordering from the Wendy’s Super Value Menu at 2 a.m. Every student has his or her own unique addiction, but one thing that I realized was that probably 4 out of 5 people I knew did share one common dependency: caffeine.
I would say that soda was pretty high at the top of the caffeine list, but it could not compete with the wide-awake goodness that coffee offers. Whether you drank it on your way to an early class or brewed a whole pot to keep you awake for an all-night study session, coffee became the buddy that was always by your side.
Go for Organic
Since coffee is such an important staple for college students, the brand that you purchase should also be a top priority. I know that many students are on a tight budget, and it doesn’t leave much room for extra spending money. But if you have your own coffeepot and brew coffee every morning or night like I did, and you know that you’re going to be spending money on a pound every other week anyways, then why not go organic?
Organic means that the product you are buying was grown with no pesticides, fertilizers or other harmful additives. So, organic coffee comes from coffee beans that were grown using renewable and environmentally-friendly practices. You can read more about organic coffee at the Organic Trade Association website.
Now I have nothing against huge coffee corporations like Starbucks or Caribou Coffee, but I think that smaller family-owned organic coffee companies can offer good, or even better, coffee products than the more popular brands. Plus, many of these smaller companies grow the coffee right on their home land and sell it locally to keep their family business alive.
Almost all of these companies promote sustainable growing practices, and some even donate a portion of their funds to eco-friendly organizations.
Here are a few organic coffee companies that I discovered, as well as some things that they do to help protect the environment:
- Bean Trees – Works with the NRDC (National Resources Defense Council), whose mission is to stop corporate companies from destroying clean air and water.
- Café Bom Dia- Uses recycled shipping pallets to reduce carbon footprint.
- Café Mam – Member of the Northwest Shade Coffee Campaign of the Seattle Audubon Society, which promotes the preservation of healthy forest habitats.
- Elan Organic Coffees – Supports programs like Coffee Kids and Cup for Education, which help to improve the lives of coffee farmers’ children.
- Jim’s Organic Coffee – Joined with Sterling Planet and the EPA to become 100% powered by renewable energy.
Coffee may not be great for your health, but it’s evident that college students, and half of the world, drinks it every day anyways. So why not support society’s caffeine addiction by buying a brand that tastes great and helps the environment?
About the Author:
Trish Smith is a copywriter for Green Student U, a blog-style site that introduces today’s students to a wide variety of global environmental issues by recognizing college campus green initiatives and personal success stories, as well as how the world is being shaped by environmental reform.