9 Brew-Tifully Sustainable Coffee Brands Serving Eco-Espresso
Ah, do you smell that?
It’s the fresh aroma of sustainable coffee brands.
Coffee is much more than a simple pick-me-up. It’s a daily ritual for many, providing a liquid hug for the mind, body, and spirit.
That’s why putting the best grind in your mug is critical—one that’s good for you, the farmers, and the environment.
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The Top Sustainable Coffee Brands For The Perfect Cup Of Joe
Equal Exchange’s high-quality coffee has been produced with Fair Trade and ethical business practices since its inception, making it a top contender in our books.
Atlas Coffee Club highlights a new country each month, bringing unique tastes right to your front doorstep—all while supporting coffee farming communities across the globe.
If you want your morning pick-me-up to be as healthy as can be, look no further than Lifeboost Coffee. Their shade-grown roasts are low-acidity and third-party tested for over 400 contaminants.
Plus, we’ve sampled each of these top three brands, so you can read our ethical coffee bean review for each below.
If you’re thirsting for more, a whole espresso shot of information is waiting at the bottom of the article.
The Full List Of Ethical Coffee Roasters
- Atlas Coffee Club | Visit Store
- Lifeboost Coffee | Visit Store
- Equal Exchange | Visit Store
- Rise Coffee Box | Visit Store
- Grace Farms | Visit Store
- Brooklyn Roasting Company | Visit Store
- Tayst | Visit Store
- Brewpoint Coffee | Visit Store
- Big Island Coffee Roasters | Visit Store
1. Atlas Coffee Club
Atlas Coffee Club’s Ethical Coffee Subscription
Price Range: $9–$49
Atlas Coffee Club has one of the most unique eco-friendly coffee subscription services dedicated to showcasing a host of exceptional coffees worldwide.
Atlas curates some of the best single-origin coffee from over 50 countries, like Ethiopia, Tasmania, and Peru.
They offer monthly subscriptions for whole bean, ground, and sustainable coffee pods, which are fully recyclable and compatible with Nespresso and Keurig machines.
Each month contains a freshly roasted batch from a new country, a postcard, tasting notes, and some history.
You can see examples of their previous batches—ranging across light to medium, and medium to dark roast (or all roasts!) choices when you sign up—but we’re loving both this month’s Peruvian roast that we sampled.
Grown in high altitudes, this dark roast tickles our taste buds and wakes us up with a bold flavor, combined with elegant caramel undertones which we find makes each sip smoothe.
High altitude grown coffee is not only generally more sustainable, but since cooler mountain temperatures provide a slower growth and coffee bean development cycle, and we can really taste how much more complex the flavor of their coffee is.
Atlas Coffee Club’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Atlas Coffee Club delivers award-winning roasts that score above the 80-point minimum in the Speciality Coffee Association’s 100-point scale.
They pay farmers well above Fair Trade prices to ensure they have enough resources to produce the best batches possible.
Atlas has also helped two farms in Nicaragua get out of debt, resulting in a healthier work environment and higher-quality products.
They have prioritized improving education and repurposing in India, using excess coffee cherries in new batches.
Atlas ships in 100% recycled packaging. So far, they have saved over two million gallons of water, 370 tons of CO2, and six thousand trees.
Atlas Coffee also incorporates new events, like 12 Months of Impact, where they highlight and support a cause from each coffee origin every month.
2. Lifeboost Coffee
Lifeboost Coffee’s Sustainable Shade Grown Organic Coffee Brand
Price Range: $20–$200
Over 60% of Americans drink coffee daily to feel energized, focused, and uplifted.
Lifeboost Coffee understands the importance of this morning ritual and aims to provide the best ethical coffee possible.
Each bag of their flagship roasts contains hand-selected, 100% organic specialty Arabica coffee beans. These beans are no joke—they’re washed with mountain spring water and dried by the sun.
The plants are shade-grown over a mile above sea level, providing a more nutrient-dense and flavorful roast. Each batch is easy on the stomach, as they’re low-acidity and tested with a pH meter.
Lifeboost’s signature Highlander Grogg has become a favorite of ours for a mid-morning pick-me-up with its aromatic and smooth notes of buttery rum, caramel, and vanilla.
If flavors aren’t your thing, they also have plenty of plain roasts, including a Midnight Roast which packs a bold, yet non-acidic punch. It’s our preference for the first caffeine hit of the morning and yet we love how its low acidity doesn’t agravate our sensitive gut issues, as normal coffee often does.
Not so with this stuff. In fact, that’s the whole point of Lifeboost’s coffees. Grown at high altitudes and slow-roasted using a special process renders even their lighter roasts lower in acidity than comparable roasts from other brands, we love that we can experiment with any roast of theirs knowing it won’t leave a acidic aftertaste and is easier on our teeth and gut.
Lifeboost Coffee’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
CEO and Founder Dr. Charles Livingston started Lifeboost Coffee to provide people with the healthiest, stomach-friendly brews possible.
Their real buzz comes from the fact that every batch is third-party tested for mycotoxins, molds, heavy metals, pesticides, and other toxins.
The Indiana-based company sources its single-origin coffee from growers in Nicaragua.
3. Equal Exchange
Equal Exchange’s Sustainable Organic Coffee Brand
Price Range: $26–$103
In the mid-1980s, the founder of Equal Exchange asked, “What if food could be traded in a way that’s honest and fair?”
The sustainable coffee and tea brand has been doing that ever since.
Equal Exchange carries a vast inventory of products, including tea, ethical chocolate (that we are ADDICTED to), nuts, dried fruit, olives, and ethical coffee gifts sourced from authentic Fair Trade partners.
Some of their best Fair Trade organic coffee includes blends like our favorite Organic French Roast, which some customers have been enjoying for over 20 years.
While we can’t rightly say we’ve been drinking it that long, we’ve been loving it in recent weeks—so ask us again in 20 years!
We find that it’s full-bodied and bold, making it the perfect wake up call, without being too intense and bitter.
There’s no added flavoring, either, so that flavor of dark chocolate and a subtle smokiness is an all-natural products of the beans themselves and the roasting process.
Equal Exchange’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Equal Exchange has employed an authentic Fair Trade model since its inception in the mid-1980s.
They work with farmer cooperatives incorporating democratic practices, like sharing resources and voting. Now, they source from over 40 small global farmer organizations.
Following a co-op model, each worker-owner shares an equal portion of the business.
Equal Exchange has gathered hundreds of individuals through its Citizen-Consumers movement and provided events on food politics, climate justice, and other social causes.
Many products are packed in compostable and recyclable materials.
Also available on Ethical Superstore (UK)
4. RISE Coffee Box
RISE Coffee Box’s Sustainable Coffee Brand UK
Price Range: £15–£38
It’s time to rise and shine with RISE Coffee Box.
Ben and Alice started RISE during lockdown after missing their favorite espresso on the way to work. When none of the monthly coffee subscription services had what they sought, they set out to make their own.
Thus, the Rise Coffee Box Subscription was born.
You can select from 1–4 bags of freshly roasted, responsibly sourced specialty coffee batches from various independent roasters across the UK.
Each box contains the story behind each brew, brewing tips, and a tasty treat from one of their partners.
Everything comes neatly tucked away in eco-friendly coffee packaging made from plastic-free and recyclable materials.
RISE Coffee Box’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
RISE fuels your morning coffee craving by working with roasters who produce high-quality, responsibly sourced, 100% Arabica specialty coffee.
They only work with roasters who share their values, with many holding B Corp certifications, using eco-friendly packaging, or contributing to other social causes. RISE ensures all of their partners pay their farmers above fair wages.
The ethical coffee company also reduces waste through eco-friendly packaging, working with Too Good To Go to mitigate food waste, and partnering with fulfillment partners who have reduced paper waste by 70%.
RISE is on a mission to reach carbon neutrality, partnering with Trees Planted to offset emissions, amongst other green initiatives.
They top everything off with the Friendly Coffee Fund (FCF), donating 1% of all sales to coffee-growing communities.
5. Grace Farms
Grace Farms’ Best Organic Fair Trade Coffee
Price Range: $14–$56
Grace Farms is operated by the Grace Farms Foundation, a not-for-profit organization on a mission to end forced labor one cup at a time.
All while still being one of the most affordable brands for sustainable coffee.
You can select light to dark roast options, like the Fairtrade certified Single Origin Colombia, with bright notes of caramel, sweet herbs, and citrus. It’s perfect for those who don’t like acidic lighter roasts.
Each pouch of Grace Farms coffee starts with high-quality organic arabica beans, tested and roasted for optimal flavor.
Grace Farms’ Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Connecticut-based Grace Farms sources exclusively from women-led co-ops across Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Colombia—so every cup invests in female entrepreneurs and empowers women across the globe.
Grace Farms gives back 100% of its profits to its Design For Freedom organization to help end forced labor worldwide, showing it’s possible to prioritize freedom over profit.
Products are shipped in plastic-free, biodegradable, post-consumer, and FSC-certified materials.
6. Brooklyn Roasting Company
Brooklyn Roasting Company’s Ethically Sourced Coffee Beans
Price Range: $16–$85
Sustainable coffee roasters like Brooklyn Roasting Company breathe fresh air into the industry with playful products and business practices.
They take a serious but not snobby approach through their “Color of Coffee” tasting method—drawing pictures of potential brews instead of rating them with a score.
Hints of fruit might receive blues or reds, while chocolaty notes might receive browns. This provides an intuitive system for their many roasts, like the boldly balanced Java Mocha.
Coffee is packaged in recyclable steel cans, and wholesale orders come in recyclable totes.
Brooklyn Roasting Company’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Brooklyn Roasting Company’s production headquarters is in the historic Brooklyn Navy Yard.
90% of Brooklyn’s coffees are fair trade certified.
Combined with sustainable packaging and fuel-efficient roasters, BRC has become one of the highest-rated sustainable coffee companies.
Tayst’s Sustainable Coffee Pods
Price Range: $23–$55
Hate all the waste of those single-use Keurig and Nespresso pods?
Tayst does too, which is why this New York-based brand has combined convenience with eco-consciousness and developed compostable coffee pods made using biomaterials, corn starch, bio-resin, and water-based ink.
Through their subscription service, you can select 30–60 cups a month and brew strength.
Tayst also offers eco-friendly ground coffee and whole bean coffee in several different brew options, like their ultra strength, full-bodied, and smokey Bold & Brazen.
Tayst’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Compostable coffee pods aside, their bags are also made from recycled and recyclable materials.
Tayst sources from Rainforest Alliance Certified farmers—ensuring dignified working conditions, gender equality, and environmental protection—and are free of GMOs, chemicals, and mycotoxins.
Working with offices and homes, Tayst expects to prevent 100 million plastic cups from ending in landfills.
8. Brewpoint Coffee
Brewpoint Coffee’s Sustainable Coffee Beans
Price Range: $15–$20
Ethically sourced beans at affordable prices?
We’ll take what Brewpoint Coffee’s having.
The Illinois-based brand has a curated inventory of award-winning, freshly roasted coffees. They range from your standard light to dark roasts, with options for whole beans and grind sizes.
One of their most exciting options is the Sumatra Honey-Processed Light Roast.
The single-origin blend comes from the West Jambi province. It incorporates the honey process, offering a fruity taste.
Brewpoint fans can also opt for a Coffee Subscription and have their favorite blends delivered to their door every 1–6 weeks.
Brewpoint Coffee’s Ethical & Sustainability Practices
From a Craigslist search for an espresso machine to four coffee shops, a coffee roastery, and a premier event space, Brewpoint has a lot brewing.
They’re Woman and Minority Owned Certified and prioritize female-led partners.
Brewpoint pays its coffee farmers $2 per pound or more above Fair Trade standards and partners with the District 205 Transition Program and World Coffee Research, donating 1% for every pound of green coffee they purchase.
9. Big Island Coffee Roasters
Big Island Coffee Roasters’ Eco-Friendly Coffee
Price Range: $14–$112
This shows in their exceptional selection of non-GMO, organic Hawaiian coffee.
The 100% Kona Peaberry Coffee is one of their best-sellers, providing a sweetly rich flavor with hints of cinnamon, caramel, and plum.
Big Island Coffee Roasters’ Ethical & Sustainability Practices
Big Island Coffee Roasters have done quite a bit for the community, putting $6+ million into the hands of local family farms.
Their roasts are specialty, Fair Trade, organic, and non-GMO.
They utilize 100% renewable energy, preventing over 29 tons of CO2 emissions.
Vertical integration and local partners further reduce emissions by an estimated 8–10%.
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How We Chose The Best Sustainable Coffee Brands
Other than a morning essential, what is ethical coffee?
We didn’t just look through a bunch of ethical coffee bean reviews when sourcing these brands.
Instead, we used strict criteria by which we judge all sustainable food brands:
Farming practices impact the flavor and nutrients of a roast alongside the environment.
Some of the most sustainably sourced coffee comes from shade-grown farms. This method grows coffee plants under the canopies of native trees, preserving natural ecosystems, promoting biodiversity, and reducing the need for synthetic pesticides.
Shade-grown farms aren’t always easy to come by, so we also looked for organic, non-GMO, and single-origin Arabica farms—which also yield chemical-free, healthy brews.
Sourcing & labor practices:
This includes following Fair Trade and Direct Trade principles, paying higher wages, and healthy working conditions.
Some brands also empower women-led farms, co-ops, and farming communities.
Carbon commitments & green practices:
Many roasters on our list fill their cups through eco-friendly packaging, carbon offset programs, renewable energy, localized production, and other ways they reduce their footprint.
Community & charitable giving:
Besides supporting local farms, we raise our pinkies to coffee companies who support their communities, non-profit organizations, and the regions they source their ingredients from.
Final Thoughts On Eco-Friendly Coffee Brands
Your morning cup of joe isn’t just the lifeblood of your day—it’s also the lifeblood of over 100 million coffee growers worldwide.
Ultimately, choosing ethical coffee companies isn’t just about enjoying a guilt-free Americano.
It’s about being part of a global movement, a collective effort to ensure our beloved coffee continues flowing without costing the earth.
Whether you’re a casual coffee drinker or a certified coffeeholic, give these planet-loving beans a shot—and share this article with a Starbucks-aholic to encourage them, too.
Every little bean counts in the grand grind of environmental change.