Category: Climate Change

Zen and the Art of Natural Coffee

Last year, I waded into the debate on natural coffee with a post called “Natural Coffees – Good for Water Resources” concluding that, “I think that natural coffees should have a future, and that the coffee industry (from roasters to farmers) should invest in methods and systems to make natural coffees more consistent”. After that […]

Beyond the Source – the co-benefits of water-smart farm practices

Last August (time is flying) we posted a summary of the Specialty Coffee Association’s Blueprint for Water Security in the Coffeelands. That paper presented 6 recommendations “to support action by coffee stakeholders committed to increasing water security at origin”. I want to highlight one of the key SCA recommendations, and how it links to an exciting new […]

SCAA Blueprint on Water Security at Origin

SCAA has just published the Blueprint for Water Security in the Coffeelands as part of its series on critical issues at origin. The Blueprint’s purpose is “to support action by coffee stakeholders committed to increasing water security at origin”   I believe the Blueprint can serve as a useful reference for highlighting water-related actions at […]

Get me SOM

2016-07-07 Comments

Over the past 18 months (and more), we’ve posted often on the critical role of soils in terms of sustainable coffee production and water resources management. With all we’ve written, if I had to choose one recommendation  for improving coffee farm management, it would be this: “Increase Soil Organic Matter” Soil Organic Matter is abbreviated as SOM. […]

Calculating Water Benefits on Coffee Farms

This a guest post by Will Garde, from the Caffeinated Engineer,  who has provided technical support to CRS’ Blue Harvest program this past year. Knowledge-based Coffee Watershed Management We know a lot about sustainable agricultural practices, and the specialty coffee industry has been a pioneer in incentivizing farmers to adapt good practices. But these practices, require time […]

Beyond the hot take on the Starbucks sustainability bond

A few weeks ago, Starbucks made an incredible announcement.  They were going to have nitro cold brew in their cafes!! I think this definitively answers the Symposium question, is cold brew a category or craze?  OK, OK.  I’m joking.  The real earth-shaker is that Starbucks has issued the first US corporate bond for sustainability.  The […]

Adding Spice to the Coffeelands in Nicaragua’s Dry Corridor

The coffeelands of Central America’s “dry corridor” are becoming major testing grounds of perseverance and innovation in the face of climate change. According to a report from the InterAmerican Institute for Agriculture Cooperation (IICA) in May 2015, “The Central American Dry Corridor and the Dry Arch area of Panama, given their long dry season and the […]

Knocking on Coffee’s Door: Cocoa’s Case as a Coffee Farm Alternative

2016-04-22 Comments

In previous Coffeelands posts we have written about the importance of diversifying smallholder coffee farms as a hedge against falling coffee prices, low coffee productivity resulting from disease (such as coffee leaf rust) and other factors. Diversification into other crops such as nuts, plantains and fruit, among others, also helps to ensure that a farmer […]

Coffee’s Water Footprint Needs to Be Revised

The Measure of Coffee’s Water Footprint Needs to Be Revised This 2003 study on coffee’s water footprint reported that it requires 140 liters of water to produce one cup of coffee. This metric is quoted so frequently (including by this blog) that it’s almost assumed to be a fact. However, the study needs a critical review because it is […]