23 episodes

How does your choice of coffee affect civil wars, illegal immigration and climate change?

Filter Stories is a documentary podcast connecting your morning coffee to millions of hidden people.

"An entertaining and thought-provoking way to address how coffee consumption affects the wider world" - Caffeine Magazine

"Quality production and compassionate, well-researched presentation" - Daily Coffee News

"These are untold stories, the sort you won’t find in glossy Instagram posts" - European Coffee Trip

James Harper is a coffee professional and storyteller who travels the world to reveal the truth behind our morning coffees.

Each episode takes over 100 hours to make and sheds a light on the stories of people hidden in the shadows of the coffee industry.

Stories range from a stateless barista stuck on a faraway island, to an award winning coffee grower earning just $2 profit from 250 espressos, to a coffee producer who is almost murdered three times during a civil war.

See the behind-the-scenes stories on Instagram - @filterstoriespodcast

If you haven't already, please subscribe to the show and review us on Apple Podcasts and Castbox!

Filter Stories - Coffee Documentaries James Harper

    • Food
    • 5.0, 48 Ratings

How does your choice of coffee affect civil wars, illegal immigration and climate change?

Filter Stories is a documentary podcast connecting your morning coffee to millions of hidden people.

"An entertaining and thought-provoking way to address how coffee consumption affects the wider world" - Caffeine Magazine

"Quality production and compassionate, well-researched presentation" - Daily Coffee News

"These are untold stories, the sort you won’t find in glossy Instagram posts" - European Coffee Trip

James Harper is a coffee professional and storyteller who travels the world to reveal the truth behind our morning coffees.

Each episode takes over 100 hours to make and sheds a light on the stories of people hidden in the shadows of the coffee industry.

Stories range from a stateless barista stuck on a faraway island, to an award winning coffee grower earning just $2 profit from 250 espressos, to a coffee producer who is almost murdered three times during a civil war.

See the behind-the-scenes stories on Instagram - @filterstoriespodcast

If you haven't already, please subscribe to the show and review us on Apple Podcasts and Castbox!

    A Girl on a Coffee Farm

    A Girl on a Coffee Farm

    Sofía is a teenager living on a coffee farm and was going to school five days a week. But a year later, she’s studying only on Saturdays.

    This might sound trivial, but I’m going to take you on a journey to show you why this undermines an industry worth over $30 Billion.

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    A list of charities working in the coffee sector: https://sritson.com/Good-Hands-in-Coffee-Beta

    Buy your next coffee from a marginalized farmer: https://marginalizedfarmers.org/

    Leave a review for Filter Stories on Castbox! https://castbox.fm/channel/2604177?country=us

    Need help on your podcast? Email James at hello@filterstories.org

    Sign up to the Filter Stories newsletter here: www.eepurl.com/dD-sY1

    Piano music composed and performed by James Harper

    A big thanks to Jake Warga, Ellen Rolfes, Michael McDowell, Janina Grabs, Helena Wolf, Jenn Rugolo, Vasant Chari, Ed Maine, Rachel Knapp, Adam Harper, Pia Klein, Andrew Johnson

    • 40 min
    Be careful what you dream (it may come true)

    Be careful what you dream (it may come true)

    You’ve just achieved a life goal. Now what? Dream bigger? Quit while you’re ahead?

    When Federico Bolaños fulfills his dream of helping a young Salvadoran win one of the hardest championships in coffee, he wants to aim higher.

    But his business partners tell him he risks losing their business.

    What Federico does next will change his life and El Salvador in ways he wants, and in ways he doesn’t.

    At the end of it all, I ask him: did you make the right choice?

    ———————————

    Buy your next coffee from a marginalized farmer: https://marginalizedfarmers.org/

    Leave a review for Filter Stories on Castbox! https://castbox.fm/channel/2604177?country=us

    Sign up to the Filter Stories newsletter here: www.eepurl.com/dD-sY1

    Guitar song “Frantic" composed and performed by Håkon Vadet (hawkonn72@gmail.com). Produced and mixed by Ekaterina Zueva

    Need a voice over professional? Visit https://hannahvoice.com

    Federico Bolaños' new roastery - https://www.instagram.com/alquimiacoffee/

    Alejandro Mendez's roastery - https://www.instagram.com/4_monkeyscoffee/

    Sound mixing: Dom Edgley / https://soundfoundryberlin.com/

    Filter Stories logo design: https://headquarters.studio/

    A big thanks to Federico Bolaños, William Hernandez, Alejandro Mendez, Victor Flores Menéndez, Geraldo Diaz

    Editorial thanks: Hannah Smith, Jasper Marlow, Pia Klein, Adam Harper, Andrew Johnston

    • 23 min
    Why El Salvador isn't bringing back coffee

    Why El Salvador isn't bringing back coffee

    El Salvador used to grow a quarter of the world’s coffees. Today, it’s barely more than a rounding error. As coffee production fell, illegal migration to America grew.

    But there are many Salvadorans who want to grow coffee again and give Trump fewer reasons to build a wall. What’s holding them back?

    ———————————

    Buy your next coffee from a marginalized farmer: https://marginalizedfarmers.org/

    Leave a review for Filter Stories on Castbox! https://castbox.fm/channel/Filter-Stories---Coffee-Documentaries-id1392173?country=us

    Sign up to the Filter Stories newsletter here: http://www.eepurl.com/dD-sY1

    Sound mixing: Dom Edgley / https://domedgleysound.com/

    Filter Stories logo design: https://headquarters.studio/

    A big thanks to Álvaro Castro

    • 16 min
    A Eulogy for Tito

    A Eulogy for Tito

    Hector “tito” Vargas passed away in December 2019.

    We honor him by playing the season finale of the Duolingo Spanish Podcast.

    Correction: Tito passed away from a gunshot wound and not a heart attack. It's unknown at this stage whether it was suicide or murder.

    Visiting Panama? I recommend Oscar as your guide: http://muchogustopanama.com/

    • 26 min
    Is your coffee building Trump's wall? Part 5: How can we support marginalised coffee producers?

    Is your coffee building Trump's wall? Part 5: How can we support marginalised coffee producers?

    You buying a coffee from El Salvador and Trump building a border wall have nothing in common.

    Or do they?

    Over five episodes, we explore a story of El Salvador. We confront massacres, wide inequalities and the specialty coffee you drink today.

    Buried deep in this story is a group of people our coffee dollars are neglecting across the world.

    Part 5 explores how we can direct our coffee dollars towards historically marginalised farmers across the world.

    ———————————

    If you haven't already, please subscribe to the show and review us on iTunes! https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/filter-stories/id1428327760

    Shape the future of Filter Stories by taking this 10 minute survey: https://www.surveymonkey.de/r/YWH3LZM

    Sign up to the Filter Stories newsletter here: http://www.eepurl.com/dD-sY1

    Sound mixing: Dom Edgley / https://domedgleysound.com/

    Filter Stories logo design: https://headquarters.studio/

    A big thanks to: Cesar Magana, Mauricio Escalón, Álvaro Castro, Emilio Lopez Diaz, Marco Ariz, Francescopaolo Marolla, Walter Retana, United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation El Salvador, Rony Cordero, Cafe Salkantay Santa Ana, Jodie Cárcamo, Manuel Jesus Lopez, David Velasquez, Gilberto Baraona, Hugo Hernandez, Sara Cortez, Consejo Salvadoreño de Cafe, Tyler Wright, Josh Fontecha, Robert Durrette, Farmers First Coffee, Mauricio Benjamin Bautista Arucha, Israel Márquez, San Carlos Dos Cooperative, Sixto Ramos, Policar Siciliano, Helena Merivel Dias de Jimenez, Olga Carmel Ramirez, Azules Piedras Cooperative, Luis Ortez Ordoñez, Roberto Figero, Jesus Salvador Ortez, Victor Flores, Bronwen Serna

    Editorial thanks: Hannah Smith, Tina Ghelani, Adam Harper, Raymond Detweiler, Melanie Böhme, Andrew Johnson, Karin Vališová, Jesse Hartman, Matthias Staeheli

    • 23 min
    Is your coffee building Trump's Wall? Part 4: The Rich and the Marginalised

    Is your coffee building Trump's Wall? Part 4: The Rich and the Marginalised

    You buying a coffee from El Salvador and Trump building a border wall have nothing in common.

    Or do they?

    Over five episodes, we explore a story of El Salvador. We confront massacres, wide inequality and the specialty coffee you drink today.

    Buried deep in this story is a group of people our coffee dollars are neglecting across the world.

    Part 4 asks whether we are denying economic opportunities to the same people our parents and grandparents did?

    ———————————

    If you haven't already, please subscribe to the show and review us on iTunes! https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/filter-stories/id1428327760

    Shape the future of Filter Stories by taking this 10 minute survey: https://www.surveymonkey.de/r/YWH3LZM

    Sign up to the Filter Stories newsletter here: http://www.eepurl.com/dD-sY1

    Sound mixing: Dom Edgley / https://domedgleysound.com/

    Filter Stories logo design: https://headquarters.studio/

    A big thanks to: Cesar Magana, Mauricio Escalón, Álvaro Castro, Emilio Lopez Diaz, Marco Ariz, Francescopaolo Marolla, Walter Retana, United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisation El Salvador, Rony Cordero, Cafe Salkantay Santa Ana, Jodie Cárcamo, Manuel Jesus Lopez, David Velasquez, Gilberto Baraona, Hugo Hernandez, Sara Cortez, Consejo Salvadoreño de Cafe, Tyler Wright, Josh Fontecha, Robert Durrette, Farmers First Coffee, Mauricio Benjamin Bautista Arucha, Israel Márquez, San Carlos Dos Cooperative, Sixto Ramos, Policar Siciliano, Helena Merivel Dias de Jimenez, Olga Carmel Ramirez, Azules Piedras Cooperative, Luis Ortez Ordoñez, Roberto Figero, Jesus Salvador Ortez, Victor Flores, Bronwen Serna
    Editorial thanks: Hannah Smith, Tina Ghelani, Adam Harper, Raymond Detweiler, Melanie Böhme, Andrew Johnson, Karin Vališová, Jesse Hartman, Matthias Staeheli

    • 22 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
48 Ratings

48 Ratings

Robirving5800 ,

Great podcast!

Very good stories about the coffee industry, delicately told with a human touch, but without sugar-coating the tougher side of the business.

vmcalo ,

Insightful and thought provoking!!!

I deeply enjoy listening to these stories.

Blind Gerry ,

Filter stories

This is a very very in-depth coffee industry podcast James goes in very deeply to all of the stories behind roasting producing and drinking coffee. It is really really worth listening to. I am a coffee roaster for the unseen Bean coffee Company.

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