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Innovation & Job News

#dcdisloyal coffee card proves popular, draws national media attention

The DC Disloyalty Card program, the coffee card that encourages D.C. java drinkers to visit six different independently owned shops, has been a huge success. Most shops ran out of the cards within the first day or two of their appearance, and the program itself has garnered national attention.
Despite the slant that some media are giving the program, the Disloyalty card isn't about sticking it to the larger corporate coffee chains. Instead, it's a celebration of the growing coffee culture and coffeeshop community in the greater D.C. area. "The purpose isn't anti-something," says Javier Rivas, co-owner of La Mano Coffee Bar, one of the six shops participating in the DC Disloyalty card program. "It's a way to promote community and promote local businesses. D.C. has established itself as a coffee town."
Rivas says La Mano, located in Takoma, ran out of the cards in 48 hours. "We received the second run this week," he explains. "[The cards] have definitely brought people out. We have our regulars—we've been open since September—[but people] want to visit other places as well."
Patrons who visit all six shops—La Mano, Peregrine Espresso, Chinatown Coffee Co., Blind Dog Café, The Coffee Bar and Filter Coffeehouse—earn a free beverage at the shop of their choice. The program is modeled after a similar program in London
Jonas Singer, co-owner of Blind Dog Café, says that the DC Disloyalty cards have been popular with his shop's clientele as well. "We ran out in about a day," Singer says. "Coffee culture is growing. Coffee fanatics are coming to D.C. [The Disloyalty card] brought people together. There was a lot of good social media—it caught on quickly."
"We're a very tight community," Rivas says, of the local coffeeshop and coffee bar owners. "If coffee sales improve in one [location], it benefits all of us."

Read more articles by Allyson Jacob.

Allyson Jacob is a writer originally hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio, and is the Innovation and Job News editor for Elevation DC. Her work has been featured in The Cincinnati Enquirer and Cincinnati CityBeat. Have a tip about a small business or start-up making waves inside the Beltway? Tell her here.
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