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    SEED Journal

    Costa Rica With The Coffee Nomad

    Costa Rica With The Coffee Nomad

    "I don’t know about you, but when I think Costa Rica I think of beaches, toucans, waterfalls and zip lining. Clearly this would be my first time traveling to Costa Rica, but something told me I was going to have a very different experience from the average visitor."

    A couple of hours after landing into the capital of San José, I found myself cruising with Nela’s dad in his truck across the steep, green mountainsides of Tarrazú.

    Tarrazú is known to produce some of the highest quality coffee in Costa Rica. It’s rich volcanic soil and varying elevations can result in clean, balanced and powerful coffees. The differences in elevations from 4,000 feet to 5,000 feet has a great influence on the flavor profiles that the region's coffee offers. And since these coffee cherries are dealing with less air at high altitudes, they mature more slowly.  But it’s a process that the farmers, and ultimately coffee buyers find worth it.

    Costa Rica Travel - SEED People's Market

    Coffee Production in Costa Rica

    Hello there! 

    My name is Erica, also known as The Coffee Nomad, and I will be guest blogging for SEED People’s Market for the next few weeks to share with you my journey to a coffee finca, or coffee farm, in Costa Rica!

    But before I dive into that, allow me to tell you a little bit about myself and how I got into this whole coffee thing.

    Around 3 years ago I was working as a news reporter in Central Texas (yes – one of those field news reporters chasing house fires and breaking news stories that often led to not-so-happy endings).  Long story short, I began a coffee blog as a creative outlet.  It started off very simple.  I mean, I’d discuss the bare bones of a shop – the menu, location, aesthetics and pricing (thrilling, I know).  

    As I ventured on this journey a funny thing happened.  The more I chatted with baristas (who were far too patient on their end) and the more books I read, I grew madly in love with the complexity of coffee.  It became a fantasy of mine to tell the ultimate coffee story; to go to the source of coffee and share the stories from there. 

    Fast-forward a couple of years later and my small little creative outlet grew into its own brand. One day a girl reached out to me on Instagram.  She told me she was from a coffee producing family from Costa Rica, but that she was in Southern California (my neck of the woods) for an internship.  So, we met up for coffee and instantly connected over travel and well, coffee.  She invited me to visit her family’s farm some day.  

    A couple of weeks went by after meeting Marianela, or Nela, and I kept playing around with the thought of making this trip really happen.

    Costa Rica Coffee Farm - SEED People's Market 

    As a young, twenty-something female with a goal to visit coffee farms – Costa Rica was a natural fit.  Among the Central and South Americas, Costa Rica has a more peaceful history.  I knew I’d feel safer than the regions that are also rich in coffee production. It kind of goes without saying, Costa Rica is a stunning country. I looked up air fares and to my surprise, it wasn’t awful.  In my head a little voice kept cheering me on, “Pura Vida!” 

    I knew there was no better time than now.  I knew I had to go.  

    And so, I first set a couple of goals – one of them being to first gain a sponsor.  After much thought about what local companies really align with my values, I decided to reach out to SEED People’s Market.  

    I was fortunate enough for them to agree to sponsor me and I was thrilled.  It was the first time I felt that someone saw value in my vision. This no longer was a creative outlet for myself, but a platform to share like-minded passions about coffee and travel. 

    I truly couldn’t believe it.  The fantasy I had three years ago to one day visit a coffee farm was going to become a reality.

    That day was February 15th 2016 when I landed in San José, Costa Rica.

    So - pack your mugs! 

    From coffee processing, to a real discussion on direct and fair trade, to the people behind the sourcing, this will be an adventure that will forever change the way you think about a cup of coffee.

    Coffee Farm in Costa Rica

    Mugs Up & Pura Vida,

    The Coffee Nomad


    B Corp is Business For Good

    B Corp is Business For Good

    From the materials used to fill your down jacket, to the conditions of the worker filling your down jacket, humanitarian and economic sustainability is something that has become increasingly important across the globe. At Seed Peoples Market, we are always partnering and building relationships with companies that seek to be humanitarian and ecologically sustainable, while providing a quality product that we can take on our next surf trip or simply use on the drive to work every day.

    Patagonia at SEED People's Market

    Photo: Patagonia, Tommy Schultz

    Internationally, there is an organization that has crafted a rigorous list of qualifications for companies who are stepping up to combat global poverty and climate change. The B Lab, a non-profit organization that seeks to use “business as a force for good”, has created a certification called the “B Corporation”. Essentially, to be listed as one of the B Corporations, a company has to meet an exceedingly high standard of humanitarian and environmental quality. In addition, once named a B Corporation, the company agrees to continue developing an interdependency of business across the world, connecting people to the products they purchase.

    Patagonia SEED People's Market

    Photo: Patagonia, Steven Gnam

    Now, why does this matter? As we continue to observe the results of rapid climate change and the discrepancies in the way people are treated in the international workplace, it has become our responsibility to no longer flippantly shop, but to stand behind companies that seek to make the world a better place. In short, the clothes we wear and products we use become an extension of what we want to represent. Seed Peoples Market is proud to carry an astounding ten companies that have been awarded the distinction of B Corporation. They are:

    Patagonia SEED People's Market


    As a store, it is exciting to join with such brilliant companies, as they continue to look at different ways to solve crises around the world utilizing their products. For example, Patagonia unveiled their “Traceable Duck Down” in this past year, Klean Kanteen has sought to positively impact the environment by joining the “1% For The Planet” organization, and Raven & Lily currently employ over 1,500 women at fair trade wages in impoverished nations. These are exciting times in the world market as we look to find solutions for global problems. As cliche as it may be, every single step of the process matters and as we step up consumer responsibility, not only will companies respond with a higher quality product, but we will see the well-being of fellow humans and our Earth grow. Partnering with these B Corporations, Seed Peoples Market is seeking to not only impact the world market for the better, but to continue to find ways to become a more environmentally sustainable and humane company.

    It's time to shop products with a purchase! 

    Written by: Brent Shenton

    ourCaste: Daily Function For Spring

    ourCaste: Daily Function For Spring

    “Goods for Life"
    The crew at ourCaste wanted to give us a first hand look of their upcoming S/S ’16 line. This season they are focusing on pieces that are highly functional and fashionable. If you haven’t discovered ourCaste yet, we highly recommend that you get to know them. They have been on the scene since and 2013 have already began to make huge waves in the industry. Their quality goods are tried and true, tested at the highest level. They use fabrics such as French Terry and Cotton Oxfords that are moisture wicking, water proof, and breathable, designed to keep up with your active lifestyle. If you need inspiration, head on over to the “journal” at
    We just got their Spring/Summer line in store, so drop by to check it out and pick up a piece for yourself or for someone you love.
     Aesthetically, ourCaste appreciates the simple and timeless elements of typography, and have relied upon them heavily for their word mark. You won’t find them plastering their mark everywhere, rather you’ll be surprised from time to time with a hidden label or message.
    ourCaste has eliminated what they call the “double closet”. Their main objective is to offer functional products that will better serve you daily, without sacrificing the use of the best fabrications in the best fits. They have found the balance of a purely functional mentality with daily wearability.
    “This is ourCaste, a group of people within society a part of something that took hold of them, not always approved by those around us."

    Lost In Skyforest

    Lost In Skyforest

    We poured the coffee from our drip maker at around 6 in the morning where it stood for some time as we loaded the car. An hour or so later we found ourselves at the base of the mountain with nearly 500 other vehicles that hoped to make the trek up the secondary highway in search of snow. Fast forward two hours and we finally arrived at our planned junction where we trekked another 45 minutes to reach a powder covered trail head that had been carved out by some previous off road wanderers. At this point I had ready downed my first two cups of steaming hot coffee. With the temperature dropping below 30 and lunch well behind us it was time to once again hit the caffeine. Only this time was different, we were now a few miles down a road that was so dense with snow and trees that most of the crowds weren't even a distant noise. The snow falling from the thirty foot trees above were the only sight and sound around. It was at this moment that we had found our happy place. It was that winter wonderland that you dream of as a kid but only see on tv. We were here and we didn't want to be anywhere else. Welcome to Skyforest.

    The snow has been falling and the temperatures have been anything but normal. This is Southern California after all and back to back snow days simply don’t occur every year. Over the past week or so our local mountain range received a few feet of that extra fluffy white powder substance that brings so much joy to our faces. Quality snow is rare and when it fall as it did this past week there is no telling of what hoops we will jump through to get a taste of it. We could have easily waxed our boards and battled the crowds for a solid day of boarding but Instead we took to our four wheel drive vehicle and headed off of the beaten path to see just how much snow really fell in the area.

    When you find yourself in such a breathtaking environment there really aren’t any words that can explain the internal peace you feel. In that moment only photos can aim to capture what you feel.

    Weekend trip to Big Bear, CA

    Big Bear Lake, CA

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    Big Bear Lake, CA

    Big Bear Lake, CA

    Big Bear Off Roading

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    Photo-Camping the Buttermilk's

    Photo-Camping the Buttermilk's

    SEED People's market is a unique store that offers niche products that appeal to modern design and inspiration from the classics. Although the SEED team has developed a one of a kind store environment they derive all of this creativity from the outdoors.

    This latest trip to the Buttermilk region near Bishop, CA is no exception. With just a truck, camping gear and 35mm roll of film, this group captured some vibes that we can all appreciate.  

    "We took a trip to the high desert and the beauty of that place did not disappoint. There is not much to say about this trip besides it being a breath of fresh air and a weekend full of good times. What's a trip into wide open spaces without some off roading through its huge rock formations? We climbed 100ft rock faces and walked carefully across frozen log bridges. The road up to that lead to the High Sierras was closed due to weather conditions, but the desert that surrounded us was unique and beautiful in its own way.

    Bishop CA Camping

    Nissan Frontier Offroad

    35mm film photo in Bishop, CA

    Road trip through Bishop, CA

    Shooting with 35mm film outdoors

    Camping in Bishop, CA

    35mm film photos from camping road trip