When the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, Rik Kleindfeldt had to change plans. The Wall was central to his research as a Ph.D. candidate at Brown University. With his plans in limbo, Rik got a job with Coffee Exchange, and found a passion that became New Harvest Coffee Roasters. Since opening in 2000, he has shared that passion many times over with anyone who has enjoyed a cup of New Harvest coffee.
Rik and former Director of Business Development for New Harvest, Gerra Harrigan (now a coffee trader with InterAmerican in Boston), moved New Harvest from a small garage in Rumford, East Providence, to a beautiful sunlit space in the Hope Artiste Village in Pawtucket. During that time, they shared their coffee with the stores and coffee shops of Providence and beyond. My first experience with New Harvest was in 2003; I was new to Providence, and thrilled to find good coffee. In the years since that first sip of their coffee, I have watched them grow in a way that is based in ethical business and care for their product that goes far beyond the numbers on the ledger sheet.
In 2007, they began traveling to Central America with the goal of connecting “directly with small farms that produced great coffee and…took care of their land and paid their workers well.” This “Source Direct” approach to coffee includes communicating and growing real relationships with farmers. It also means that New Harvest is committed to the welfare of the people who grow and process this coffee. “We pay all of our Source Direct partners at least 30% above the minimum Fair Trade price and for high-quality microlots we often pay more than double the Fair Trade minimum.”
Locally, New Harvest supports organizations that work hard to make our community better, including Farm Fresh, Southside Community Land Trust, and the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. Current Director of Wholesale and Education, Ana Mallozzi, can be found spreading the word about animal rescue organizations or dedicating her musical talents to Girls Rock RI.
For us at Ellie’s Bakery, New Harvest is one of the great community partners that shares our passion for quality and care. They have been there from the beginning of Ellie’s, helping us outfit our little bakery with a hand made La Marzocco espresso machine, a wealth of knowledge, and offering a helping hand when we need it.
We care about the quality of coffee you enjoy with us at Ellie’s. We feel fortunate to have a local resource like New Harvest to help us get that coffee in your hands.