Caribbean Farms traffics black gold

The Canadian coffee co has started selling its organic Black Sunshine Haitian coffee to consumers - but they have to navigate the shady underworld of the drug trade (online) in order to get it.

Welcome to the deep dark underbelly of…the coffee business.

To access Caribbean Farms’ online-exclusive Pure Black Sunshine blend, coffee lovers go to, virtually charter a flight to a mysterious island, make it past an imposing steel door and deal with a humourless gun-toting dealer who will shoot you on the spot if you rub them the wrong way.

Make the right choices, however, and once you place your order, a package of coffee resembling a brick of narcotics, with a symbol marking light (Lizard), medium (Scorpion) or heavy (Spider) will be mailed to you in a brown envelope wrapped with clear tape.

Created by Halifax and Toronto’s Extreme Group and Toronto digital production studio Lollipop, the website includes approximately 10 minutes of content filmed using a Steadicam, intuitive point-and-click decision-making navigation and photography by Frank Hoedl. Promotion of the site is currently limited to a viral effort through social media.

Extreme Group creative director Shawn King says that Caribbean Farms, originally a wholesaler before making this first foray into retail, gave his agency permission to run with something a little dark and subversive.

‘It comes from a bean that is in demand but a little hard to get, and because of that, we kind of landed on this idea of treating it like a narcotic,’ King tells MiC. ‘So we started with the packaging, and it led to this site. You can only get this [product] through a website.’

The campaign is ‘aiming at the online generation of coffee drinkers – probably a younger demographic. We’re aiming towards the type of consumer who is web-savvy, who understands and is not thrown off anything shocking that you might see online,’ he adds.

King says there will be further work on the site, plus a launch of another more retail-friendly Caribbean Farms product in the months to come.