James Bellis founder of Balance Coffee subscription service

Discover: Balance Coffee

Balance Coffee is here to provide us caffeine lovers with everything our taste buds and planet deserve: a unique, delicious, and ethically and sustainably sourced cup of Joe. Founded by James Bellis in 2020 and born out of ten years’ experience working in the speciality coffee sector, Balance is an innovative coffee subscription service available throughout the UK and Ireland.   

How does it work? James tells Hawkker that he designed the Balance subscription “to fit your individual lifestyle. You can choose the Discovery subscription for an around-the-world flavour experience; you can choose Focus & Energy to power up or choose to Relax for our decaf coffee subscription.” Next, you need only choose between whole and ground beans, and your order will be on its way! Imagine, you’ll never have to gaze in horror into your empty coffee container ever again – and no, we’re definitely not speaking from experience.

Through cooperatives and direct trade relations, “Balance Coffee is sourced from the top 5% of coffee farms worldwide,” James continues to explain. “It means we pay a premium price for our coffee, but we do this to ensure the farmers at origin receive a higher price (25%+) so they can re-invest in better farming practices and a sustainable supply of coffee for the future. Without this approach,” the founder warns, “the coffee industry is in jeopardy as the current model is not sustainable.” Balance’s full range of coffees’ origins are fully traceable, ensuring customers benefit from complete transparency about where their beans have been.

James’ thorough selection process doesn’t only mean the beans are sourced ethically or that they inevitably taste far better than their commercial, low-grade counterparts (in fact, Balance’s coffee earns a Speciality Grade, the highest quality coffee available). It also ensures “a naturally clean cup,” as James puts it. “Our coffee is healthy, packed with antioxidants, and great for your body. It’s tested for things you’d probably rather not drink, like mould, mycotoxins, and pesticides.” Balance’s emphasis on acquiring only the finest beans also means that a single coffee subscription will allow you to sample myriad different flavours; the beans’ provenances frequently change, not only because coffee is seasonal but also because the highest quality coffees can only be produced in small batches. Just think, with all of these rich new tastes and aromas, you could tour the world from the comfort of your kitchen table.

James is also keen to dispel some misconceptions about coffee. “Coffee gets a bad rep these days relating to caffeine,” he muses, “but with moderation in mind and an active, healthy lifestyle, a couple of coffees a day is perfectly fine. Coffee has plenty of health benefits, and numerous studies back this.” Said health benefits include (of course) increased energy levels, but coffee is also believed to promote weight management, enhance athletic performance, and protect against chronic disease. Not that we ever needed convincing!

Beyond the company’s ethically-minded purchasing methods, Balance is also committed to giving back. As James describes, “we believe that business should be used as a tool for change, and we use a number of simple initiatives to help achieve this. Every month we plant trees using Ecologi, a charity doing great work to proactively plant trees to offset Co2 emissions. So far, we’ve planted over 600 trees across the UK and overseas – it’s a great way for our customers to feel good about choosing Balance.” As an aside, you can keep track of Balance Coffee’s ever-growing contribution on Ecologi’s website, which keeps an up-to-date count of the number of trees planted (and where!).

Balance’s efforts extend to clean water projects, James explains. “Every month, we donate 1% of our revenue to Project Waterfall, a coffee charity committed to building wells and providing clean water and sanitation to coffee-growing communities.”

Aside from the subscription service, Balance Coffee also sells all the shiny machines you could need to brew the perfect cup. “Brewing amazing coffee is a science! There are so many factors involved from coffee freshness, to weighing your beans, to what water you use.” If that sounds intimidating to the non-experts, James recommends starting with the humble cafetiere. “It’s one of the most popular brewing methods, and it’s so simple to use at home.”

“If you’re new to coffee, then the best way to start is to grab a bag of ground coffee and purchase a low-cost piece of equipment like a cafetiere or Aeropress. It’s all about keeping it simple to get you into it,” he continues. “Once you’ve mastered the basics, you can look into upgrading your equipment and finding your favourite brewing method.”

The website includes a host of helpful and informative guides on every coffee-related topic under the sun, as well as some lovely recipes for coffee-based drinks and foods. “My personal favourite coffee recipe is, without a doubt, the espresso martini,” James confesses. “I created a video on how to make the best espresso martini which you can watch and try out at home yourself.”

Check out Balance Coffee’s profile, as featured in our “Best Coffee Beans To Your Door” List, and subscribe for fuss-free and delicious coffee on their website.

James Bellis founder of Balance Coffee subscription service

Discover: Balance Coffee

Delicious coffee that’s good for you AND the planet? Delivered straight to your door? Say less.

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