Fair and Direct Trade

The Fair Trade USA/FLO break-up and its ramifications is seeping into the mainstream media. Recently, for example, the New York Times published an article on the debate on the future […]

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Revised on February 8, 2013

A recent announcement by Fair Trade USA qualifies as major news that changes the meaning of “Fair Trade” certification in the U.S., and which may mean changes to environmental standards for coffee certified as FT by Fair Trade USA.

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Revised on March 23, 2014

Sips: Fair Trade debate

by on July 16, 2011

There are so many great voices in the fair/Fair trade movement, I keep out of it aside from environmental aspects of certification and occasional links. Here are a few of […]

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Revised on March 23, 2014

Big kerfluffle, well explained in the following posts; make sure to read the comments. My thoughts on how this relates to other certifications follow. To tell the truth: who owns […]

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Revised on March 23, 2014

Counter Culture Coffee has just released its first annual Transparency Report, covering 2009. Simple, straightforward, five pages describing each of CCC’s Direct Trade coffees, including the date of the last farm visit by a CCC employee and how much they…

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Revised on February 8, 2013

In spite of what many people believe, Fair Trade certification alone does not automatically mean or guarantee that rigorous environmental standards were followed, or that the coffee was grown under shade. Here’s a summary of the Fair Trade environmental standards.

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Revised on March 23, 2014

Green coffee and home roasting supplier Sweet Maria’s has formalized their direct trade buying program, calling it Farm Gate Coffee. Farm Gate prices are at least 50% (but often 100% or more) over Fair Trade prices. Their latest newsletter (PDF…

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Revised on August 14, 2011

Counter Culture Coffee recently launched its Direct Trade program. It is a natural progression from their Source project, and is a robust example of similar models employed by other roasters, most notably Intelligentsia. Counter Culture is a pioneer, however, in…

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Revised on March 23, 2014

Fair Trade news

by on October 3, 2007

This blog focuses on sustainable coffee specifically as it pertains to the environment. I’ve written some about Fair Trade, because there is a connection between poverty and environmental degradation. But Fair Trade is complex, and the issues surrounding Fair Trade…

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Revised on August 14, 2011

Direct trade in NYT today

by on September 12, 2007

There’s a nice article in the New York Times today describing the specialty coffee industry and the workings and benefits of direct trade. The title, “To Burundi and Beyond for Coffee’s Holy Grail,” sort of misses the point, but it…

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Revised on March 23, 2014

One of the major criteria a roaster must meet to get favored nation status on the left sidebar as a source of sustainable coffee is transparency. C&C is all about educating consumers on how to recognize and appreciate sustainable coffee….

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Revised on September 25, 2013

Some recommended reading

by on April 13, 2007

Book: Organic Coffee: Sustainable Development by Mayan Farmers by Maria Elena Martinez-Torres. This book is based on a PhD dissertation, but has been skillfully adapted and is very readable while still preserving the excellent information including tables, charts, and references….

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Revised on February 8, 2013

Intelli on Fair Trade

by on June 20, 2006

Geoff Watts of Intelligentsia Coffee wrote a long e-mail lucidly explaining the shortcomings of Fair Trade and Intelli’s strong commitment to farmer relationships, posted at green LA girl. It’s excellent and insightful. First, he defines sustainable coffee as being profitable…

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Revised on November 12, 2012

Green LA girl has posts on coffee and social issues. Coffee and immigration talks about the connection between the coffee crisis and people abandoning their farms and heading for the U.S. border…another example of how helping to improve living conditions…

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Revised on February 8, 2013

Fair Trade article

by on May 15, 2006

In a follow-up to yesterday’s World Fair Trade Day post, the Louisville Courier-Journal had a very good article on Fair Trade. It provided an understandable overview of the Fair Trade issue and the coffee crisis, highlighting Guatemalan farmers and one…

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Revised on April 2, 2012