Equator Coffees was founded on the belief that coffee can be roasted better, brewed better, and, most importantly, it can be sourced in a way that makes lives better. Founders Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell began roasting and selling coffee out of a Marin County garage in 1995, and that garage marked the beginning of a high-impact coffee company focused on quality, sustainability, and social responsibility.

Equator was named after the region where coffee grows, but has come to mean so much more than that. As they trace the path from source to sip, they try to make everything they touch better. From people to planet. Because they believe coffee can do more than just taste good. It has the power to do good too.

Sourcing Practices

Their long-term relationships throughout the international coffee community allow them to source distinctive coffees directly from producers committed to excellence, sustainability, and responsible farming. Among many examples, they have been working with their partners El Batan in Ecuador for over fifteen years.

As California's first Fair Trade certified coffee roaster in 1999, and the first B Corp certified coffee roaster in 2011, Equator has stood at the forefront of the sustainable coffee movement since their inception. They have always believed that better coffee has the power to shape a better future for both people and planet, and today, this mission is more vital than ever before. 

Sourcing and roasting the highest quality coffee is only possible with a transparent supply chain that contributes to the social welfare of farmers and producers. Through certification with Fair Trade USA, USDA Organic, B Corp, and now, for the first time in coffee, the Regenerative Organic Alliance, they ensure their supply chain benefits all stakeholders, which leads to environmental sustainability both at home and abroad.

Why we love Equator

What stood out to us about Equator was their core values: Good coffee, Kind people, Better Planet. It really resonated with our own mission, and bonus points that they’re also a Bay Area women-owned business! Their coffees are delicious and comforting, and make great pantry staples. - Natalie