HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Story about World Coffee Crisis (4 msgs / 97 lines)
1) From: John Abbott
Charlie,
  My coffee doesn't taste as good now!  I was drinking a Guatemalan as I
read the story. How incredibly bad the life of coffee farmers is, and how
can we ever find room to complain about the price?  The more one learns
about the origins of the beans the more one needs to do something - but
what?
--

2) From: Mike McGinness
http://www.msnbc.com/news/coffee2_front.asp?pne=msnGratefully Variable Variac Rockin' Rosto Roasting in Vancouver, WA USA
Grindin' & Brewin' with Solis Maestro & Miss Silvia
MM;-)
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3) From: Charlie Herlihy
--- Mike McGinness  wrote: 
<Snip>
If you found that interesting then may I suggest this one: http://www.freshcup.com/backissues/june02/coffeelosses.htmlCharlie
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4) From: Charlie Herlihy
--- John Abbott  wrote:
<Snip>
 That's a tough question. which some people are having some
success with. I assume that David Griswold who was the
photographer for that article is the same David Griswold with
Sustainable Harvest coffee, and, who I believe I read is the new
president of the SCAA (anybody know?) The organic and fairtrade
cooperative that he works with and buys from in Oaxaca is the
best I've come accross there as far as keeping quality high
enough to justify premiums, the coop rules seem reasonable and
logical from the local indigenous cultural perspective unlike
some others where European idealogs wrote semi- marxest/new age
twaddle into the bylaws, and the marketing of the coffee seems
to be handled very well. I thought I might buy a sack or two but
they would only agree to sell 5 sacks at a time and on a regular
basis which leads me to believe they're having no problems
selling. Except for that coop the whole area around it is full
of abandoned coffee farms right now. I know for a fact that many
of them had as good, or better coffee than the coop farms, but
the growers lacked connections with decerning buyers. More
direct relationship buying from more specialty importers is
needed, but that's really hard with small producers. Small scale
growers with less than top quality coffee can't expect to be
able to make a living growing lower grade stuff for export and
small scale producers with great coffee somehow have to be able
to continue. When the crops of the great stuff and blah stuff
are mixed by exporters or coops, as happens so often, no one
wins exept middlemen who collect x amount per lb. shipped out.
One thing for certain-there are no easy or simple answers, and a
lot of great suffering will continue no matter what we do. :o( 
At the least, I hope we can be a little compassionate when
annoyed by illigal migrants looking for that job washing dirty
coffee cups or whatever. Hopefully that article gave some insite
into how they ended up in that situation.
 Charlie
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