June 26th, 2013
ORANGE, Mass. (WGGB) — A local man wins a Nobel Prize for Business. He is Dean Cycon, the owner of Dean’s Beans Organic Coffee Company in Orange.
The Business for Peace Foundation, based in Oslo, Norway, announced its 2013 nominees. In total, there were eighty nominees from fifty different countries.
Not only is Cycon from Western Massachusetts, but he is the only American honored an award.
“Even after 20 years I say I’m not a business man. I am a social activist using business as a vehicle for social change,” says Cycon.
The exceptional quality of his products is a bonus. His mission is to prove that business can promote positive change in developing countries and be profitable at the same time. He focuses on the concept of fair trade that he practices with coffee- producing villages around the world.
“We guarantee that at no time will you ever pay the farmers less than they need to support their families, keep their kids in school, put food on the table,” he says.
The minimum he pays directly to a farmer for coffee is $2.20 a pound. In comparison, the price on the world market today for coffee is $1.19 a pound.
And Dean takes his mission even one step further…
“We work with the farmers to create programs that address the development needs in the community as they identify them.”
Then he trains the farmers to run the programs themselves.
Today ABC40 found Dean’s Beans products at Cornucopia in Northampton. The natural grocery store is happy to support the product and all it stands for.
“Dean is just an incredible person all the work that he has done and I love his products,” says owner Bud Stockwell.
Unfortunately Dean could not make it to the awards ceremony in Norway because he was at his daughter’s college graduation in California. He had a friend accept the award on his behalf.
One of the best things about Dean is the modeling he is doing for his daughters, showing the next generation a way of giving and succeeding rather than taking.