Selecting and Acquiring Superior Beans

Choosing the raw material for S&D’s coffee starts with a visit. Key members of the commodities team travel to many coffee-growing communities around the world. Finding just the right coffee truly is a journey — researching farms, talking to growers, touring mills and, of course, tasting and buying superior beans. Not only does this allow S&D to know our suppliers, but it also ensures the quality of every batch of coffee we make for our customers.


Cupping is one of the tasting techniques used to evaluate the aroma and flavor profile of coffee and tea. Our trained and certified cuppers taste coffee and tea from around the world side-by-side to understand the differences between the growing regions. They’re testing for defects and mild to major changes. We also employ licensed Q Graders – the highest standard of coffee cuppers. There are less than 200 Q Graders in the United States. At S&D, the cupping process helps us ensure that the quality you expect is the quality you will get.

Learn more about Commodities Sourcing and Risk Management