Responsible Coffee: Beyond Fairtrade

What's the connection between speciality coffee, ethical sourcing, Fairtrade Coffee and caring for the environment?

The vast majority of coffee is commodity grade, where the buyers are purely focused on achieving the lowest possible price, with no grower loyalty and little consideration of coffee quality.

This means the lowest-price-wins model creates a race to the bottom where high volume, fast turnaround and lower quality coffee production wins.

This is evident in the fact that, as I type, "...the trading price of coffee has hit a 14-year low...where traders are determining the price in London and New York with little consideration for the farmers on the receiving end" according to Faitrade CEO Micheal Gidney in an article with The Grocer magazine.

The result is that commodity-grade coffee farmers are less able to invest in and implement sustainable farming practices. They really are at the whim of global coffee price fluctuations, which is where the Fairtrade model has been so fantastic in protecting the incomes and welfare of these growers and workers.

This is in total contrast to the growing approach of speciality grade coffee, where small-holder coffee farmers focus on quality over volume, achieving their premium quality bean through sound farming and environmental practices that help nurture crops year-round. 

From ‘slow’ and organic farming practices, to investing in worker training and the hand-selection of the finest coffee cherries, speciality coffee production takes time and investment – you simply can’t rush slow-grown coffee!

This is the reason we choose to fill our capsules with speciality grade and arabica coffees and why we pay our growers a premium well beyond the Fairtrade Minimum Price model.

Speciality coffee breeds a culture of aspiration rather than protectionism so we hope you join us in seeking out the very best that does the best for all involved, including the environment.

Is Speciality coffee eco friendly?

In the coffee industry, farmers at the commodity end of the global market are often squeezed on profit, and even forced to sell their crops at a loss.

Large scale coffee production which relies on deforestation and heavy use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides also create an oversupply at a cost to the planet, and a negative impact on other coffee growing regions and smallholder farmers, where the cost of growing coffee can be higher.

It's just not sustainable, which is nicely summed up in another quote by Fairtrade CEO Micheal Gidney from the article: “If growers can’t afford to invest in sustainable practices, the entire future of coffee production is under threat”

That's why we're proud to pay our smallholder farming cooperatives and growers a premium well beyond the Fairtrade Minimum Price for our speciality coffee, helping them both earn a living income and build sustainable livelihoods - so their families and local communities can thrive into the future.

Responsible Coffee: BlueGoose Sourcing Policy - Beyond FairTrade

The benefits are of course also felt by the planet, the environment and the local wildlife because of the incentive for growers to invest in sound and environmentally friendly farming practices to continually improve the quality of their beans and command higher prices, while improving the local biodiversity as they do it.

So by seeking out, buying and sourcing Speciality coffee we can all help make a difference, helping farmers and growers be less at the whim of commodity market coffee prices, instead able to command their own pricing, their own future and work with rather than plunder nature. ⠀

This is the model we subscribe to, paying a fair and premium price that reflects the quality of the beans in our eco coffee pods and helps encourage sustainable coffee farming practices.

So when you enjoy a Blue Goose you know you're enjoying the best quality coffee while supporting those who grow it and the origins in which our beans are grown!