By Alana Scharlop | Photo by Matt Schmachtenberg

CoffeeAs the weather gets colder there seems nothing more enticing than the morning cup of joe that greets your face with a warm steam and a smell that perks you up for the day.  If you find yourself struggling to carry on with your day without the stimulation of coffee, you are not alone.


According to the National Cancer Institute, coffee drinkers who have two to three cups per day are proven to live longer lives. Males have a 10 percent chance and women have a 13 percent chance of outliving non-coffee drinkers.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health those who drink coffee have lower chances of developing Parkinson’s disease and type 2 diabetes and lower rates of liver cancer and cirrhosis progression.



Organic v. Fair Trade

Organic coffee is certified to grow under the U.S. standards of organic production. This method ensures the coffee plants are grown without the use of pesticides, and crops are rotated to maintain soil fertility, prevent erosion and soil depletion. According to the Organic Trade Association the organic coffee market was worth $1.4 billion in 2010 in North America alone and has continued to grow.

Fair trade coffee is about giving back to the farmers. Workers and farmers are justly compensated for their product. If you are buying brand-name coffee in the grocery store, look out for the fair trade insignia. The money that producers receive from the fair-market products can help whole communities.



Break the routine and grab a cup in one of Harrisonburg’s local niches. 

Cinnamon Bear (600 Unversity Blvd.)

Mr. J’s (1731 S. High St.)

Artful Dodger (47 W. Court Square)

Greenberry’s (400 S. High St.)



While coffee now is cultivated and traded out of many different countries, the roots are found in Arab countries, which then spilled over into Europe and then to America through trade with the Far East.