City of Bristol College has been working with a Bristol coffee roaster, Adrian Wogan from Brian Wogan Coffee, to introduce a new ‘buddy’ initiative linking College students with learners from La Bastilla Technical College in the highlands of Jinotega, Nicaragua.
Adrian Wogan will pay $6000 US per year to put three Nicaraguan students through education at La Bastilla Coffee Plantation. Adrian stated: “I am really pleased that City of Bristol College has come on board with this initiative. It is great to give something back to the community both here in Bristol and in Jinotega”.
Adrian Wogan has adopted this strategy over buying fair trade coffee as it benefits the families of coffee growers directly.
Every year, hundreds of tons of coffee are destroyed in order to keep market prices artificially high. At the same time, market competition from outside the EU is restricted.
This fresh approach to ethical sourcing is a very positive move for all concerned.
Each student from Nicaragua will be buddied with a City of Bristol College student to share letters and pictures, with a possibility of the students meeting each other at points during the year.
The three students from La Bastilla, Harry Antonia, Hazzel Anielka and Karen Elohenia, are studying subjects in Business, Hotel Administration and Agronomy (the science of using plants for food).
Adrian Kirikmaa, Restaurant Manager at City of Bristol College, comments: “The initiative is an alternative to buying ‘fair trade’ coffee with 100% of the money going straight to the students’ education. This project allows our students to gain a better understanding of where the coffee they serve originates from, as well as allowing the Nicaraguan students to gain a better understanding of the final destination of the fruits of their labour.”
The three City of Bristol College students are currently studying BTEC National Diploma in Hospitality Management. The college students met Markus Fischer, General Manager of La Bastilla coffee plantation (see picture), to discover more about what the project entails.
As a result of this initiative, La Bastilla Coffee will now be served in all restaurants at the college. It is also supplied via Brian Wogan Coffee to many of the southwest’s top end restaurants and hotels.
Bristol is twinned with Puerto Morazan in Nicaragua, along with six other towns from around the world. This buddy scheme further cements UK relations with Nicaragua.
For more information on City of Bristol College’s catering courses, visit www.cityofbristol.ac.uk.