Tag Archives: quality

315. The great (Robusta) debate

Over the past few months, a debate over the state of the market has raged between people with very different visions of how that market will evolve into the future.  The tenor of the debate has been respectful, but charged, marked by references to class warfare, crony capitalism, core values and special interests. I am […]

281. Feliz cumpleaños, 5 de junio

Today the 5 de junio cooperative celebrates a birthday.  The coop, comprised of some 500 determined farmers in the rugged Nicaraguan highland town of Las Sabanas, was a CRS partner under the CAFE Livelihoods project. Counter Culture is helping to mark the occasion by telling the 5 de junio story and making 5 de junio’s […]

271. Counter Culture microlot research update

With apologies for the delay: Counter Culture Coffee has published the full report from its groundbreaking study “The Social Impact of Microlots.” Milestones and more related content from the CRS Coffeelands Blog: November 2010.  Counter Culture Coffee Director Peter Giuliano discusses the potential perils of microlots with Matt Earley of Just Coffee, a Fair Trade […]

268. “Whole-of-business” trading solutions

In this article in the current issue of Roast Magazine, Fair Trade USA CEO Paul Rice again expresses optimism about the future of Fair Trade Certification in the United States.  Before you panic, let me say this is not another post about Fair Trade for All.  At least, it is mostly not.  Mostly, it is […]

263. Research review: Counter Culture’s case study on the social impact of microlots

Counter Culture Coffee Buyer and Sustainability Manager Kim Elena Ionescu was scheduled to present the company’s brilliant case study on the social impact of microlots to the 2012 SCAA Expo today.  She was unable to attend, so Counter Culture’s Coffee Director Peter Giuliano stood in for her — arguably one of the more notable understudies […]

262. Counter Culture interview: The social impact of microlots

Kim Elena Ionescu probably needs no introduction.  The Counter Culture Coffee Buyer and Sustainability Manager has been sourcing great coffee for years for one of the leading brands in specialty coffee.  Along the way, she has been steadily moving the company toward more sustainable and transparent sourcing practices, and showing a way forward for other […]

261. Measuring Direct Trade’s impact

Later this week, Counter Culture Coffee will present the results of its study “The Social Impact of Microlots” to an audience at the 2012 SCAA Expo.  I am excited about the report because it directly addresses two issues that have been the source of much discussion on this blog in recent years: the potential for […]

251. SCAA 2012: The view from the coffeelands

In keeping with an annual tradition started back in 2009, today I publish my third annual preview of “don’t miss” SCAA presentations.  This year, I divide my picks into two “streams of enlightenment” — “downstream” presentations that push knowledge of origin toward the marketplace, and “upstream” presentations that bring market intelligence to farmers and agencies […]

249. Counter Culture raises the bar. Again.

Counter Culture Coffee raised the bar on transparency two years ago when it published its inaugural Direct Trade Certified Transparency Report.  Now Counter Culture is at it again, this time with a pioneering effort to assess the impact on smallholder farmers of the microlot approach to sourcing that is so central to the Direct Trade […]