By Sherry Laskin

When Virgin Voyages launches Scarlet Lady in 2020, you won’t find any single-use plastic items on board. This includes straws, bottled water, condiment packets, shopping bags, food packaging, stirrers, and take-away coffee and tea cups.  They are all banned.

Next up for sustainability and responsibility…coffee.

Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady Ministry of Grounds coffee bar
Virgin Voyages’ Scarlet Lady Ministry of Grounds coffee bar.

Sustainable Coffee Partnership

On Earth Day, Virgin Voyages announced a new partnership with Intelligentsia Coffee and Emerald Brand.  This will add sustainable coffee to the list of complimentary beverages offered onboard and a new line of plastic-free Tree-Free disposable products.  This will include cups, napkins and paper towels.

Intelligentsia Coffee Direct Trade

Virgin Voyages partners with Intelligentsia Coffee as exclusive coffee provider with a custom Virgin Voyages blend and expert baristas crafting beverages at Ministry of Ground, the Scarlet Lady’s coffee bar.

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Both companies share values of commitment to quality and responsible sourcing.  Environmental sustainability and social impact are at the core of Virgin Voyages’ values. The cruise line’s purpose is to create an Epic Sea Change for All and use business as a force for good, creating positive changes for people and the planet.

Those values are shared by Intelligentsia’s team, who focuses on making extraordinary coffee an agent of change. Intelligentsia Coffee is best known for being the first to adopt the direct trade model. Their buying team travels directly to coffee-producing countries to source and collaborate with partners, paying well above fair trade prices

Virgin Voyages’ exclusive Intelligentsia blend will be complimentary at all eateries on board Scarlet Lady as well as her sister lady ships.

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There’s also Scarlet Lady’s Ministry of Ground coffee bar on Deck 7 and Ministry of Ground Too, located in the Galley Food Mart.  Both will feature coffee by Intelligentsia.  Fully equipped with expert baristas and made to order beverages. Intelligentsia’s renowned coffee educators will provide extensive training to all Virgin Voyages baristas.

In addition to great hand-crafted specialty coffees, Ministry of Ground will serve complimentary light cakes and bites with retail items like bags of Intelligentsia coffees and Kilogram teas, coffee cups, kettles and more available for purchase.

Chicago-based Intelligentsia is a pioneer of coffee’s “third wave.”  Intelligentsia is best known for being the first to adopt the direct trade model.  They employ a progressive sourcing method where their buying team travels directly to coffee-producing countries to source and collaborate with partners, paying well above fair trade prices.

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