Starbucks Adds Visitor Center to Its Costa Rican Coffee Farm, Hacienda Alsacia

Slated to open in 2018, the immersive coffee farm experience will
complement the company’s new premium retail spaces by providing
customers opportunity to learn about coffee at origin

Investment in Coffee Farming Research and Development Center Will
Showcase Impact of Starbucks $100 Million in Ethical Sourcing Commitments

SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today, Starbucks Coffee Company (NASDAQ:SBUX) announced that it will be
developing a visitor center on the grounds of its wholly owned coffee
farm, Hacienda Alsacia. Purchased almost four years ago, Hacienda
Alsacia is located in Costa Rica on the slopes of the Poas volcano and
serves as a global Research and Development facility and working farm
for Starbucks. The new facility will soon allow visitors from around the
world to get a first-hand understanding of the agronomy work the company
has been supporting and investing in for two decades.

“Our Roastery in Seattle, Washington offers one of today’s most
immersive retail experiences, where the theater of coffee craft is on
full display. We have a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate what
happens on coffee farms so that our customers understand the humanity
and care that goes into each cup of our coffee,” said Cliff Burrows,
group president Siren Retail and Global Coffee, Starbucks. “This visitor
center allows us to create a connection between the people that grow the
coffee, the role our farm plays in helping to ensure their economic
stability, and the stores that roast and brew it for our customers every

Visitors of the Hacienda Alsacia farm and café will be able to explore a
46,000-square-foot area located on the Starbucks farm allowing them to
engage in the journey of coffee from seedling to coffee field, the wet
milling process, drying patio all the way to roasting and brewing.
Designed by members of its in-house design team who helped pioneer the
company’s first Starbucks Reserve® Roastery in Seattle, this locally
relevant, sustainable ecosystem will pay homage to the more than 1
million coffee farmers and workers that Starbucks helps to support
around the world.

Since purchasing the 600-acre (240 hectares) farm in March 2013,
Starbucks has maintained it as a typical working farm to learn more
about the resources necessary to grow high-quality arabica
coffee. In doing so, it has helped to inform its multi-million-dollar
investment in ethical sourcing resources for coffee farmers including:

  • A firsthand understanding of the company’s Coffee and Farming Equity
    practice (C.A.F.E.) sourcing standards, developed with Conservation
    International, in maintaining healthy coffee trees which resulted in a
    nearly 50% increase in yield on the farm since 2013.
  • The development of hybrid coffee tree seedlings at the farm’s nursery
    in collaboration with industry experts to directly address the impact
    climate change is having on the coffee industry including the
    increased incidences of coffee leaf rust or “roya” in parts of Latin
    America. In 2015, Starbucks donated thousands of seedlings from five
    different coffee tree hybrids developed through its research to the
    Costa Rican Coffee Institute (ICAFE).
  • Establishing and verifying best practices for coffee farming which is
    disseminated throughout the coffee producing world by housing global
    agronomy summits and the company’s nine Farmer Support Centers and
    supplier network.

As part of this construction project, the company anticipates that it
will create dozens of short-term jobs as well as provide new
opportunities for long-term employment on the farm when the visitor
center opens. Starbucks has been offering coffee from Costa Rica since
the company opened its doors in 1971; its first Farmer Support Center
opened in Costa Rica in 2004 and has since moved to the coffee farm.
Starbucks has 11 stores in Costa Rica that are operated by its licensing
partner Premium Restaurants of America. Starbucks Costa Rica recently
launched a special edition single-origin packaged coffee sourced from
Hacienda Alsacia for customers to enjoy in market.


Starbucks Media Relations