Here is a brief history of Café Feliz and Jordan and Marie Foote.
Jordan and Marie Foote visited Costa Rica, along with their missions pastor from Mission Hills Church (Littleton, Colorado), in 2010 to meet with missions leaders who were collaborating on sending Costa Rican workers into China, as well as other nations in the Middle and Far East. The result of those meetings was a personal invitation to the Footes and to their church to develop a model for training Latino cross-cultural workers in sustaining ministry efforts within unevangelized communities through the establishment of a local small business. Mission Hills Church tasked the Footes to look specifically into a coffee business, particularly something along the lines of a coffee shop, if possible.
The Footes quit their jobs, engaged in partner development and several pre-field trainings. They arrived in San José, Costa Rica in August 2013, in partnership with WorldVenture, a Colorado-based missions agency and a host of personal supporters behind them. After a year and a half of language learning and cultural adaptation, Jordan was able to apply his MBA training and other business experience in formulating a solid, long-term plan for starting a business in which the Footes could train Latinos who were being mobilized to the Middle and Far East. In light of Jordan’s business analysis of the Costa Rican coffee market and their global network, his conclusion and recommendation to the church was that they look first into coffee distribution, not in setting up a coffee shop. Their business mentors at the church agreed that it was a wise path, as well. However, at that point, the Footes realized that they had multiple connections worldwide for a coffee business of some kind, but did not have a true, inside connection in the Costa Rican coffee world. God had a special plan in mind! In January of 2015, they met with two Costa Rican believers at their church, Roberto Matarrita and Isaac Santamaría of Santamaría Gourmet Coffee (SGC), a Costa Rican coffee company which had high quality coffee ready to export around the world, but needed a connection to market their product. The Footes also realized that the two men were a rare find in the Costa Rican circles they had observed: young, but solidly grounded, mature believers, who did not just talk about their faith but lived it out daily in some challenging circumstances. A partnership was born out of that miraculous fit!
In the summer of 2015 the Footes established Café Feliz, the worldwide marketing arm for SGC’s beans, purchased from the high-altitude, rich volcanic soils of Tarrazú, Costa Rica, a region renowned for award-winning beans resulting in bold, yet smooth coffee. In December 2015, Café Feliz was asked to allow Denver Christian High School to sell their coffee as a fundraiser for the school band. In the same month, Café Feliz launched Club Café, a monthly coffee subscription for U.S. customers. The next step is to procure green beans from SGC’s farmers for shipment to U.S. and international roasters with whom the Footes have a relationship (approximately 15 roasters in 7 different countries, with the list growing monthly).
For more information on the coffee and on the story of the partnership between Santamaría Gourmet Coffee and Café Feliz, visit http://cafefeliz.us and http://www.footetraffic.net/santamaria/. Also, see WorldVenture’s interview of the Footes and Isaac Santamaría at https://www.worldventure.com/coffee-thats-truly-worth-the-cost/