Yesterday I participated in an online forum on the future of smallholder Fair Trade hosted by the Fair Trade Resource Nework. My presentation, in synthesis, went something like this: Fair Trade and Fair Trade Certification have catalyzed smallholder farmer organization and empowerment over the past decade through their support for farmer-led cooperatives. But there are […]
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (known as CIAT, its acronym in Spanish) collaborated several years ago on research in Mexico and Central America that has helped put the issue of food security on the map in the specialty coffee industry. My colleagues in East Africa will be conducting similar research in Ethiopia, Kenya and Rwanda in the coming months in connection with Green Mountain-funded food security projects in those countries. As far as I know, this will be the first-ever household-level data on hunger in the coffeelands in East Africa.
Over the past week and a half, I have been posting on the issue of how coffee companies are investing at origin. Today: what they are investing in, and how that may be changing.
I met at SCAA with Thanksgiving Coffee President Ben Corey-Moran, who explained that the company will be focusing more moving forward on its “core business model.” As it turns out, his concept of the company’s core business model includes innovative partnerships with NGOs in East Africa to create incentives for effective climate change mitigation and adaptation. It seems the concept of the “core business model” in the coffee industry may be evolving.