Margaret Nyamumbo has made history as the first Black entrepreneur to have her coffee brand, Kahawa 1893, sold in Trader Joe’s grocery stores across the country. As a third-generation coffee farmer from Kenya, she knew firsthand the injustices women coffee workers face in the industry.
That’s why Margaret, who earned her Master’s degree at Harvard Business School, decided to quit her job at Wall Street and founded the Kahawa 1893 to support women coffee workers and help fight injustices in the coffee industry.
“In Kenya, women provide 90% of the labor in coffee but go mostly uncompensated. I founded Kahawa 1893 to make sure the women were visible and get a fair share for their outsized contributions to coffee,” Margaret told Travel Noire.
And that’s exactly what she did as the company ensures fair wages for women coffee workers. They also set up a women’s fund where customers can directly contribute, in which the company matches the amount, to support the farmers.
Kahawa 1893, which derived its brand name from the Swahili term for coffee plus the year that coffee returned to Africa, now reached new heights as it becomes available in all 200 Trader Joe’s stores in California aside from other stores in New York City and Chicago. It will also be available in other states soon.
“It’s pretty exciting to be the first Black woman-owned coffee brand at Trader Joe’s and I have been amazed by all the support we have received from customers. As a regular shopper at Trader Joe’s, it’s even more meaningful because the coffee category has always consisted of only TJ-branded coffee. I want to celebrate this with everyone in the community who can now shop for a Black-owned coffee brand at their local store.”
Kahawa 1893 promises a flavorful cup of 100% Arabica coffee in several varieties while at the same time helping give back to the people in the coffee industry.