Lava Java began with our purchase of an abandoned farm in the Galapagos highlands. As we began restoring the farm with unique and endangered Galapagos plants, we discovered a few dozen stunted coffee bushes under the tangle of weeds. An opportunity occurred to us: What if we could nurture the coffee bushes back to production and use the income from coffee to restore the native flora on our farm, making it more hospitable to Galapagos birds and insects? Thus was born Lava Java – an organic coffee that is both good for the environment and gratifying to the most health and quality conscious consumers.
Why restore? Invasive plants pose a great threat to the fragile Galapagos ecosystem on which many local species of birds and insects depend. Invasive plants, such as guava and blackberry, propagate easily, and rapidly outcompete native flora. In case you’re wondering, although coffee is considered an introduced species (it was brought to the Galapagos in the mid-1800’s), it is not invasive and not considered a threat to the local environment.
At Lava Java, we’ve worked diligently to restore our farm back to a thriving native ecosystem, rich in species found nowhere else in the World. Our coffee is now grown in the shade of a canopy of endemic scalesia trees.
Over the past decade we have reinvested 100% of our coffee income into the farm – for restoration efforts and to pay our growing team of workers good salaries with full benefits. Over this period, Lava Java has become synonymous with quality and social and environmental responsibility. Our goal is that our farm represents an inspiration and model to other farmers to join our effort to steward abandoned land back to productivity and ecological integrity. We see every new farmer committed to this vision as a conservation ally.
The future of Galapagos depends on finding ways for people to live not only from, but also in harmony with, the special and highly fragile Galapagos ecosystem. We’re trying to help define one such way. Lava Java is a superior quality, home-produced coffee that captures the essence of the Galapagos. We hope to contribute to a unique place where people learn to live in harmony with nature, conserving it as part of their everyday lives. This is our commitment, and we hope it will by yours, too. Please support Galapagos conservation so that you, too, can do your part in helping to keep Galapagos one of the World’s very special places.