Fair trade coffee ethics religion and

Share via Email Guilt-free cappuccinos are one of the biggest recent success stories of the ethical consumer movement. Likewise, the continued growth of guilt-free cappuccinos is one of the biggest recent success stories of the ethical consumer movement. This period has also seen a proliferation of other ethical coffee accreditation schemes, including Rainforest Alliance and UTZ. Research by Ethical Consumer has shown that nine out of 10 tea brands carry some kind of ethical accreditation, while seven out of 13 brands of coffee bean are ethically accredited.

Fair trade coffee ethics religion and

He began his career as a humble barista, worked his way up the ladder, and in co-founded Counter Culture Coffee, a wholesale roasting and coffee education enterprise in Durham, N. In his role as the green coffee buyer, Giuliano has developed close working relationships with farmers throughout the coffee-growing world, traveling extensively to Latin America, Indonesia, and Africa.

Today, Giuliano no longer purchases Fair Fair trade coffee ethics religion and coffee for his business. FLO rules cover artisans and farmers who produce not just coffee but also a variety of goods, including tea, cocoa, bananas, sugar, honey, rice, flowers, cotton, and even sports balls.

Like many economic and political movements, the fair trade movement arose to address the perceived failure of the market and remedy important social issues.

As the name implies, Fair Trade has sought not only to protect farmers but also to correct the legacy of the colonial mercantilist system and the kind of crony capitalism where large businesses obtain special privileges from local governments, preventing small businesses from competing and flourishing.

To its credit, Fair Trade USA has played a significant role in getting American consumers to pay more attention to the economic plight of poor coffee growers. Although Fair Trade coffee still accounts for only a small fraction of overall coffee sales, the market for Fair Trade coffee has grown markedly over the last decade, and purchases of Fair Trade coffee have helped improve the lives of many small growers.

Despite these achievements, the system by which Fair Trade USA hopes to achieve its ends is seriously flawed, limiting both its market potential and the benefits it provides growers and workers. Among the concerns are that the premiums paid by consumers are not going directly to farmers, the quality of Fair Trade coffee is uneven, and the model is technologically outdated.

This article will examine why, over the past 20 years, Fair Trade coffee has evolved from an economic and social justice movement to largely a marketing model for ethical consumerism—and why the model persists regardless of its limitations.

The Origins of Fair Trade The idea of fair trade has been around since people first started exchanging goods with one another. The history of trade has shown, however, that exchange has not always been fair.

The mercantile system that dominated Western Europe from the 16th to the late 18th century was a nationalistic system intended to enrich the state.

Under these circumstances, trade was anything but fair.

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Local workers often were compelled through force—slavery or indentured servitude—to work long hours under terrible conditions. In the s and s, nongovernmental and religious organizations, such as Ten Thousand Villages and SERRV International, attempted to create supply chains that were fair to producers, mostly creators of handicrafts.

In the s, the fair trade movement began to take shape, along with the criticism that industrialized countries and multinational corporations were using their power for further enrichment to the detriment of poorer counties and producers, particularly of agricultural products like coffee.

Adding to these perceived economic imbalances is the cyclical nature of the coffee business. As an agricultural product that is sensitive to growing conditions and temperature fluctuations, coffee is subject to exaggerated boom-bust cycles.

Booms occur when farm output is low, causing price increases due to limited supply; bust cycles occur when there is a bumper crop, causing price declines due to large supply. Price stabilization is an objective commonly sought by less-developed countries through commodity agreements.

Fair Trade certification is also not concerned with quality, which is a tool that can be used to earn a higher profit for coffee producers. Another factor to take into account is that coffee falls under the SPO category of Fair Trade certification. Fair Trade label is particularly strong and popular in the United Kingdom, The United States Starbucks made a pledge to make all of its popular espresso brand Fair Trade by the end of on the other hand, Nestlé who happens to be a bigger brand with numerous has also join the bandwagon and made commitment to the mass consumer market like its number one rival Kraft, whose brands such as . Case Fair Trade Coffee: Ethics, Religion, and Sustainable Production 1- When companies doing business have difficulty sustaining quality throughout the supply chain, as illustrated by recent food and product safety scandals.

Thus the International Commodity Agreement ICA evolved as a means to stabilize the chronic price fluctuations and endemic instability of the coffee industry.

The first of these agreements arose in the s to provide stability during wartime, when the European markets were unavailable to Latin American producers. After the war, a boom in coffee demand made renewal of the agreement unnecessary. But during the late s, down cycles threatened economies once again.

The ICA essentially was little more than a cartel agreement between the member countries coffee producers to restrict output during bust periods to maintain higher prices, storing the surplus beans to sell later when output was low.

Because the US government was concerned about the spread of communism in Latin America, it supported the cartel by enforcing import restrictions.

Inhowever, with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the waning of communist influence, the United States lost interest in supporting the agreement and withdrew. Without US enforcement, the cartel fell prey to rampant cheating on the part of its members and eventually dissolved.

Attempts have since been made to resurrect the cartel—but though it exists in name, it remains largely ineffective. Recognizing the dire circumstances confronting farmers during the late s, when the price of coffee once again plunged, fair trade activists formulated a system whereby farmers could obtain access to international markets and reasonable reward for their labor.

In a coalition of those economic justice activists created the first fair trade certification initiative in the Netherlands, called Max Havelaar, after a fictional Dutch character who opposed the exploitation of coffee farmers by Dutch colonialists in the East Indies.

The organization created a label for products that met certain wage standards. Other similar organizations arose within Europe, eventually merging in to create FLO, based in Bonn, Germany, which today sets the Fair Trade-certification standards and serves to inspect and certify the producer organizations.

One reason is the importance of coffee to the economies of the countries in which the crop is grown. Coffee is the second most valuable commodity exported from developing countries, petroleum being the first.Fair trade products come mostly in products such as coffee, chocolate and bananas the packaging mostly shows smiling workers that gives the impression that fair trade is such a worldwide success, however Adam Smith Institute () states that ‘Smiling photos may improve turnover, but they cannot speak for the overall effectiveness of Fair.

coffee that, first, meets the Fairtrade standards and, second, is sold with the Fairtrade brand. The higher price is termed the social premium and may be spent by the exporting cooperative on business expenses including the costs of meeting Fairtrade standards, or on social projects like health, education or constructing baseball fields.

Fair Trade Versus Free Trade Cohort 4 believes that fair trade is the most prosperous way to trade with other countries. Both free trade and fair trade have advantages and disadvantages.

Fair trade coffee ethics religion and

The researchers in Cohort 4 have established a viewpoint regarding fair trade and free trade. Trade necessarily ^contribute to sustainable development. _ It is true that the Fair Trade coffee system v the producers, exporters, importers, and retailers operating by the rules and standards of FLO vhas.

Fair trade coffee ethics religion and

Fair Trade Coffee: Ethics, Religion, and Sustainable Production. on the details portrayed to me, the issue is whether or not Starbucks should buy fair trade coffee, as pressure and accusations from NGO Global exchange to do so has presented Starbucks with this challenge.

Selling an ethical cup of coffee has become big business. Likewise, the continued growth of guilt-free cappuccinos is one of the biggest recent success stories of the ethical consumer movement.

fair trade coffee | Ethics Alarms