I have met most of the people behind these companies, and can therefore confidently recommend them in good conscience. As I say here, the best indicator of the real, behind-the-scenes practices of a business is the attitude of the business, and the attitude of a business comes from the mentalities, values, and, well, attitudes of its founders and managers. I’ve done a lot of research in the past year, and part of that research has been listening to what people/companies say about each other as much as what people/companies say about themselves. When everyone- customers, suppliers, and competitors- has nothing but good things to say about a company, then the attitudes of that company start to speak for themselves. Some of these businesses are run by people who’ve become my friends and supporters of the entire When Coffee Speaks project. Are these recommendations a little biased? Maybe. But I’d like to think I’ve done a good job in choosing my friends, and I am confident that my coffee business friends are as gracious with everyone they work with as they are with me.