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Topic: coffee concerns (9 msgs / 189 lines)
1) From: joe Frey
Hello, I want to buy coffee that is as lucrative for the coffee farmer 
as possible. How do I go about this? I know this was recently discussed 
here. Could someone summerize? But at the time I was engrossed in 
getting something decent from my La Pavoni Romantica. Joe.
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2) From: Ben Treichel
Fair Trade Coffee seems to be your answer. However, I'm no expert.
Ben
joe Frey wrote:
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3) From: jim gundlach
The general conclusion is that there is no better way of insuring that 
the grower gets a fair price for their crop than to by from Tom and 
Maria.   They know that his business depends on the growers that 
produce quality coffee have to survive for good coffee to be produced.  
In addition their values are in the right place.
Jim Gundlach
roasting over pecan wood fires
in La Place, Alabama.
On Thursday, October 3, 2002, at 08:26 PM, joe Frey wrote:
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4) From: Dan Bollinger
Buy Fair Trade coffee and contribute $1.00 per pound of everything you drink
to Coffee Kids.  Even with the added buck you get the cheapest, best coffee
in the world. :)   Dan
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5) From: floyd burton
Right on-pay premium prices for a premium product that delivers outstanding
results in the cup.  Paying extra for some sort of certification is not the
way to go-ultimately the quality of any product is what determines it's
position-like Abe said-You can fool some of the people - etc.  If we are to
solve the coffee glut problem-gotta grow the usage and the way to do that is
to deliver quality products and pay people for producing them.  end of rant.
Another point-there is a very real place for suppliers like SM because they
add value.  I don't know how many times I have bought beans from other
sources-kinda of like to dabble in as many areas as possible-and have gotten
beans that produced a product with little or no distinctive taste-just
unremarkable stuff.  Every batch I have purchased from SM has had some
distinctive varietal character-did not like always like what was in the cup
but it was not indifferent - gotten way too many of those beans from
suppliers who don't or don't know how to cup.  The service of evaluating the
beans is the extra value SM delivers.

6) From: EskWIRED
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Can somebody help me to understand how Fair Trade works?  My impression is
that the extra money goes to the "farmer".  But what about the poor workers?
Does Fair Trade require that they be paid some minimum wage?
Or am I thinking in a American manner, with "farmer" meaning ConAgra and
ADM?  Is the meaning of farmer WRT coffee some little family guy whose wife
and kids do the harvesting on the "farm"?
Or are we talking about Brazilian agribusiness cleaning up while hiring
migrants at 2 cents/hour?
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7) From: Dan Bollinger
In a nutshell:  Farmers (not corporations) can apply for fair-trade status
if the get certified by a third-party.  This allows them to sell coffee at a
higher price minimum instead of the going rate.  It is a substantial
difference to them and results in higher wages to workers.  But, the market
for fair-trade coffee is low, so only about 20% of a fair-trade farmer's
crop will be sold at the higher rate.  If more of us bought fair-trade
(especially large roasters) then the market for this commodity would rise
and so would the percent of fair-trade bought from the farmers.  Dan
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workers?
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wife
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8) From: Charlie Herlihy
--- EskWIRED  wrote:
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 The money paid by an importer for fair trade coffee goes to the
fairtrade certified cooperative. The coop is owned by the
farmers jointly but with the capital and other costs of starting
and running a coop with a wet and dry mill the farmers
themselves may well not recieve anything after expenses untill
loans are (hopefully) finally paid off. Then they're ahead of
the game and have a chance to get the full value for their
products, which would never happen otherwise. Meanwhile, one of
the rules for becoming a cert. fairtrade coop is that any
workers on the farms or in the coops do have to be paid the
legal  minimum wage for the country they operating in. There are
also some restrictions on child labor. There are more rules
regarding the democratic nature of the cooperative. Individual
coops can have any number of addition rules beyond these but
that's up to them.
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 Sorry, I don't know what WRT is. Fair Trade coop members do
tend to be very small farm operators who do most of their own
farm work with some hired help for weeding and picking a few
weeks in the year. Lots of unpaid volunteer work by the members
running the coops, but some reletively well paid people doing
the bookwork, legal stuff and machinery maintainance and
operation.
 Big estates don't tend to be involved with FT coops at all.
Some used to do their best to prevent them from forming using
the worst kind of intimidation tactics, and somewhere it's
probably still happening because the unorganized small farms are
a source of dirt cheap cherry for the big estate mills.
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 That's most comercial coffee, not Fair Trade
Charlie
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9) From: NOEL HONG
The impact for every dollar donated to an organization such as CoffeeKids 
can be huge. Check out the Visionaries Program on PBS about CoffeeKids work 
in Mexico & Central America. The Hjeos education program for rural Costa 
Rican farm kids cost (I think)$37/year. The multiplier effect for the GMAS 
programs in Mexico can really stretch the economic benefit of a dollar. The 
individual/community empowerment of self-run, self-sustaining programs will 
help maintain the rural coffee farming lifestyle of these people.  In return 
we have a source for our coffee needs.
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Noel V. Hong
email: nhong32590
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