Endiro Coffee is among five destinations statewide to be recognized in the Illinois Made program established in 2017 by the Illinois Office of Tourism. Endiro joins two other previous Illinois Made Program inductees in the Aurora Area: Wurst Kitchen (Aurora) and Hardware Sustainable Gastropub & Brewery (North Aurora).
Endiro is a complete tree-to-cup operation beginning with coffee grown by women-led cooperatives in Uganda. The coffee is exported and then brought to Illinois where Endiro then roasts and brews it in their downtown Aurora coffee shop. Endiro's profits are dedicated to partnerships with local charities focused on ending child vulnerability in the communities of Uganda and locally here in the Aurora Area.
Its downtown Aurora location is its sixth and only cafe in the United States. At the cafe, visitors can enjoy signature coffee drinks, breakfast and lunch items, along with sustainably sourced tea, juices, and smoothies in a cozy, welcoming environment. Its outdoor patio offers scenic views of the Fox River and is host to live performances in the summer months.
On January 23rd, 2020, the Aurora Area CVB and City of Aurora teamed up to present Endiro with its Illinois Made honors: a ceramic plate produced by Mississippi Mud Pottery of Alton, Illinois. At the ceremony, Aurora Mayor Richard C. Irvin commended Endiro on its dedication to "brewing a better world" in downtown Aurora.
Gloria Katusiime, co-founder of Endiro Coffee, brought greetings from Uganda to the presentation. "It's really an honor to receive this award on behalf of the people of Uganda," said Katusiime. "This coffee shop started in Uganda in 2011. The vision of the company was to end child vulnerability in Uganda—as a result of civil war, HIV and AIDS—and we used coffee to build the company because it's loved around the world."
"For the past eight years we have worked to grow the company so that families and children could have a different life," Katusiime added. "Every purchase here does a lot to help."
"It's very humbling to be recognized as an Illinois Maker and to have a chance to represent both our Aurora and Ugandan roots," said Cody Lorance, co-founder with Katusiime of Endiro Coffee.
"Coffee has always been a global story, but too often one marred by exploitation and injustice. We are grateful that Illinois Made will give us a chance to tell more people about our tree-to-cup coffee family and encourage them to brew all the good they can."
Launched in 2016, the Illinois Made program spotlights the people, products and experiences unique to Illinois, inspiring travelers to explore off the beaten path destinations around the state. There are currently more than 150 makers in the program. To learn more about Illinois Made visit EnjoyIllinois.com/IllinoisMade.