The Cup That Counts

Los Angeles

Los Angeles


Paying better, building real relationships and sharing risk. It all sounds a little inconvenient. Inseparable since birth, The Cup That Counts entered this big ol’ world with Commonfolk in 2013. The world wasn’t too dissimilar then. Supply chains were still dominated by commodity markets rife with exploitation and inequality. Huge faceless systems built for the convenience of the end consumer preserve the status quo. There is no greater example of this than the story of coffee from crop to cup. Coffee producers in developing nations have born the brunt of its greed. The Cup That Counts is our avenue to build and support a coffee industry that is fair for everyone involved. Producer through to consumer, we’re taking responsibility to invest in a life-giving value chain. We’re learning the opposite is true of the inconvenience myth, as we see the communities we are a part of positively developing. Our work is never complete but we remain steadfast to the ‘inconvenient’ truth that every cup counts.


Together, the Commonfolk community has raised $200,923.28

Read the latest update for most recent funds raised and donated. Last updated 1st March, 2021.



Zukuka Bora Coffee Company

What does life changing coffee taste like? Get some ZB coffee in your mug.

Zukuka Bora was established to equip and empower communities on the slopes of Mt Elgon, Uganda, by producing top quality Arabica coffee. Through no shortage of smiles, sweat and challenges, their fourth season has been the most successful yet and we’re stoked to share their pride with you via six different lots.

This last season brought better prices and bonuses to over one thousand farming families for their coffee cherry, and more than one hundred folks gained meaningful employment. The story goes on as they set out to also holistically tackle the issues faced by their communities. This has included building soil health, mobilising community health promotors and establishing savings groups. Epic.

We’re mighty proud that Commonfolk is a foundational and ongoing partner with Zukuka Bora. We’re family and growing together.

Speaking of good eggs, the Commonfolk community has: Donated over $120K, all of which is contributing to ongoing infrastructure, equipment and training. And, purchased over 30 tonne of green coffee at fair prices, directly contributing to economic development on Mt Elgon.

Want to know more? Squiz our coffee Partner Profile and Blog.

Home Ground Cafe

Birthed in the Tanti Estate in Mornington with a vision to champion the strengths of the community, Home Ground is a vocational training cafe bridging the gap between local unemployed youth and the opportunity for a career in our region's hospitality industry.

As a social enterprise, foundational and ongoing partnership with Commonfolk through donated freshly roasted coffee and The Cup That Counts funds has ensured they can continue to usher tangible change for our community. Since starting in 2018 with four young people, Home Ground has now had over 30 young people walk through its doors and benefit from their hospitality training program. The real deal.

Just a really decent stone’s throw away from HQ, be sure to pop around to say hi to Joel and the team and sip some excellent coffee. They’re doing incredible work and their house made treats are the best in the biz.


Since day dot, 20c from every cup of Commonfolk coffee sold has been transferred to The Cup That Counts. Add in the tips from our kickass cafe team, constant fundraising events over these years and contributions from some of our incredible wholesale coffee partners. We’re talking community.

Through the years we have connected with good people in various parts of the world to build long standing commitments in our value chain for tangible positive development. This began by being a foundational partner for Zukuka Bora Coffee Company, with the necessary USD20,000 to buy initial land and infrastructure being donated by our Commonfolk community through The Cup That Counts. Year on year a large proportion of The Cup That Counts raised funds are directly transferred to current Zukuka Bora projects that are directly improving the coffee quality Commonfolk then purchases at fair prices in commercial transactions. Tangible economic empowerment.

Fundraising events have been spontaneous over the past eight years. Latte art smackdowns and Sunday sessions, to Christmas Eve olliebollen and Zukuka Bora fresh crop launches. These will always continue! In 2021 we’ll have the inaugural The Cup That Counts day on the Queen’s Birthday weekend, with $1 per coffee sold directly contributed to Zukuka Bora projects. Be sure to get to your local participating Commonfolk dealer, and look out for the donation tins in the wild.


Do you have questions about TCTC? Want to get involved some how?

Have a suggestion for how we can develop our impact? Want to know your closest Commonfolk coffee dealer?

You’re a good egg.

Send a note to Jordan