HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Black Gold, The Movie (28 lines)
1) From: Demian Ebert
Greetings-
Part of our weekend coffee extravaganza in New York City last weekend was to
take in a screening of this movie: Black Gold (www.blackgoldmovie.com). It
was billed as a documentary relating to the vast disparity between a price
paid by many for coffee (think corporate coffee) and the price paid to the
farmer that actually grew that coffee. It follows the Oromia Coffee Farmers
Cooperative Union in Ethiopia for the most part, bouncing back and forth
between the developed consumer nations and the Ethiopian farmers.
Overall, I was a bit disappointed. It turned out to be much more of an Oxfam
"Fair Trade" certification piece than an actual documentary. We learn some
of the benefits of the coop and fair trade certification, but most of what
we see is a discussion of how the commodities trading sets the coffee prices
in a manner unfair to the small farmers. No surprise there. There's a great
segment with the manager of a *$ in Seattle who is pretty amazingly out of
touch with coffee that just that segment is worth the price of admission.
However when that gets juxtaposed with the Ethiopian farmer living in
poverty, the audience gets hit with a stick, again. There's a segment on a
"feeding center" for malnourished children that's not even tied into the
theme of the show. Is it worth seeing? I think so. It's an impressive amount
of work to turn coffee cherries into the beans we get and roast. Just don't
expect a classic documentary.
Show dates are available on the website.
Demian


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