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March 08, 2017
Launched in 2007 in the Italian city of Bergamo, Mogi Caffè is a luxury coffee company whose dedication to quality is matched only by its commitment to ethics and sustainability. We sit down for a coffee and chat with Mogi’s founder, Monica Forcella, who tells us a little about the company, its strong ethical stance, and the secrets of her own perfect cup of Joe.
Inspired by her family’s coffee roasting and distribution business, Mogi Caffè has retained strong local roots, while expanding its business to distribute its products around the globe. When asked about the company’s achievements, Monica explains that respect is a key pillar of their on-going success, “Mogi Caffè selects the very best coffee, and blends this in Italy for export. Alongside the power of an excellent espresso, we also strongly believe in respect for people and all things; in other words, we look for growth through sustainability.” She continues, “We respect the earth by working with coffee beans that mostly come from smaller plantations. This helps to preserve their aroma and the area’s biodiversity. We also choose packaging that can be fully separated in order to simplify the recycling process.”
And Mogi Caffè is every bit as respectful of the people who produce their award-winning range of coffees. As Monica explains, “Respect for people translates into growth. For this reason, Mogi Caffè has chosen to act on the coffee supply chain, working with social cooperatives to support the education of a new generation of roasters. Some are trained in the traditional wood-roasting techniques used to produce our fine coffee, while much of our packaging work is undertaken by differently-abled people, who might otherwise struggle to find work.”
Mogi Caffè also has strong ties to the world of art and design, sponsoring a variety of cultural events, while ensuring that its products are packaged to be as pleasing to the eye as they are to the palate. The brand has gained prominence in the world of fashion, with Mogi Caffè being served by Lanvin and Hermès at major events, as well as at London’s renowned Clerkenwell Design Week, and by luxury yacht company Ferretti Group at their annual gathering in Cannes.
With such a strong emphasis on quality, design and maintaining an ethical operation, it may not come as too much of a surprise to learn that Mogi Caffè is staffed entirely by women. Monica muses, “At the beginning, this was just a coincidence; however nowadays, with all that is going on in the world, we have embraced the all-female team.” She continues, “If you think about the term “barista”, you immediately imagine a guy, and if you think about roasters, you’ll most likely think of male technicians. We want to break that glass ceiling, one bean at a time!” However, as with everything that Mogi Caffè do, respect is key, with Monica clarifying, “Of course, we also work with men, for example our lawyers and consultants, so we are certainly an equal opportunities company!”
When asked for her favourite way to enjoy a cup of Mogi, Monica suggests a homemade iced latte. This easy-to-make drink pairs well with either a square of good quality dark chocolate, or with ice cream on a hot day. Simply take two cups of freshly-made coffee (Monica recommends using a moka pot for an authentic Italian flavour), add two cups of cold milk, then blend in a cocktail shaker with five or six ice cubes. This will give you a refreshingly long drink that will see you through Hong Kong’s long summer months in sophisticated style – which seems entirely appropriate for such a fashionable, forward-thinking company.
For more caffeinated drink inspiration, check out our coffee guide!
Kate Farr is a co-founding writer and editor at Editors' Ink HK, a blogger at Accidental Tai-Tai and a mum to two little boys. With a husband who's an enthusiastic amateur cook and two young sons with big appetites to feed, mealtimes play a central role in Kate's home life. Motto: "Diet? What diet?' Follow her on Instagram.
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