” A Black business doing business with the first Black nation in our hemisphere, connecting Black businesses around the world.”– Adarian Lherrison, Founder of Javae Coffee and Tea
Javae Coffee and Tea is on a mission to flip global commerce as we know it, through coffee. Growing coffee is a revolutionary act. Coffee is one of the largest traded commodities in the world and one that relies on poor Black and brown people pulling it from the ground to sell to affluent — mostly white and Asian — people. Javae grows over 30,000 pounds of coffee annually on Adarian Lherisson’s 64 acre family farm, in the mountains of Haiti — as they’ve been done for 87 years. Those 30,000 pounds are exported globally for wholesale and even retail, in select cities. Adarian Lherison happens to be a Black man and HBCU graduate (Tennessee State University). His business model profits Black people in America and uplifts the first Black nation in the West, Haiti. Javae owes its existence equally to Adarian’s entrepreneurial genius and pure fate.
“gou rich la”“The flavor is rich” in Haitian creole
There are levels to coffee. The cheap stuff at the gas station is not what we’re discussing right now. The very best coffees are grown in high altitudes at low pressure — rich conditions that one would find on a mountain in Haiti. Javae Coffee is luxurious to the taste buds; the primary flavor notes are smoked honey, fine chocolate followed by a lingering hint of caramel and spice. A scientific approach was used to find the very best way to roast Javae Coffee, a process that Adarian has since licensed and is exclusive to the company. Jamaican, Columbian and Ethiopian coffees all have their own, distinct taste. Haitian coffee does as well, which Javae Coffee has perfectly captured for consumers across the globe. The methodical approach the company takes to capture that perfection is one that only an engineer could — Adarian happens to be one.
“The mountain thanks you”Common mountain saying
Adarian spent 12 years in corporate America as an electrical engineer. Coffee had always been a part of his life but the road to selling it wasn’t obvious. Adarian is the son of a Haitian immigrant, his father left Haiti in 1960 as a political refugee. Regime change on the island forced much of his family to seek refuge in the States, others were simply murdered by the government — a fact Adarian was unaware of growing up in New York City. After his parents divorced, Adarian and his mother settled in Nashville, where he became painfully aware of his Blackness and the need to advance Black communities in the States as well as in the Caribbean. He worked his way through TSU as an entrepreneur and graduated with a dual engineering degree. Adarian eventually landed in consulting, where he needed an edge to land clients. His family in Haiti had always sent him care packages, complete with Haitian coffee. Adarian began bringing the coffee to client meetings and instantly they stopped talking business and only wanted to discuss coffee. Coffee had always been a part of his life and between his restlessness at work and the reception his Haitian coffee was receiving from clients, Adarian wanted to pursue it fully.
Adarian traveled for 2 years, studying coffee culture and the processes behind producing it. He also became aware of the disparity in wealth between Black and brown coffee growers and their consumers. He took a trip to Haiti and paid a local to be his interpreter. Adarian eventually found himself high on a Haitian mountain, overlooking the sea. At the end of his tour the guide introduced Adarian to a group of locals, who brought Adarian a care package that looked very familiar — it was identical to the ones he’d received his entire life! Adarian was face to face with his family in Haiti, whom he’d never known personally. He was face to face with the people who, for 87 years, had grown the richest coffee he’d ever tasted. They’d sold a good deal of their land and were trying to hold on to what was left, 64 acres. Adarian bought the land from them and began employing his family to grow coffee, as they’d done for generations.
Today Javae Coffee and Tea literally spans the globe, actively investing in Haiti and Black communities in America with each dollar earned. Adarian’s biggest client, in fact, is a group of Black people in Vancouver, Canada. It is truly Black business, on an international scale — Black people in Haiti grow coffee that is sold by a Black American, to Black Canadians. Javae Coffee can be found in retail outlets in Atlanta, Birmingham and Nashville. It is also sold online, at the Javae Coffee website. Javae literally means “To go and agree” in Haitian patois, spoken in the mountain region. Javae reflects universal Black business on the most powerful and grand scale and is a company worth supporting.