Organic CoffeeJust-picked coffee beans. All coffee plantation photos by Ana Labate | SXC.





Category Main Page
Articles & Reviews




Category Main Page
Articles & Reviews



Main Nibbles

Main Page
Articles & Reviews Of Foods
From A To Z



Product Reviews

Main Page
Foods, Beverages, Books,
News & More





November 2006
Updated November 2009

Product Reviews / Main Nibbles / Coffee

The Best Organic & Fair Trade Coffee

Fair-Trade Certification


This is Page 2 of a 5-page article. Click the black links below to view the other pages.



Fair Trade

The Fair Trade movement helps to limit exploitation and ensures that farmers are paid a fair price for their crops. A fairly young movement, Fair Trade Logobegun in 1997, twenty nations—17 European countries plus the United States, Canada and Japan—formed Fair Trade Labeling Organizations International (FLO). (The list is now up to 23 countries total.) Each nation has its own Fair Trade association; in the United States, the association is called TransFair USA, and it issues the seal at the right for products it certifies (the European Union has its own seal, as do Japan and Canada).

Coffee (and other commodities, including cacao) certified as Fair Trade must comply with a number of economic, social and environmental conditions. The middleman, who under the traditional model paid little for the beans and sold them at high profit, is eliminated. Under Fair Trade:

  • Coffee growers, generally small farmers, own and work their farms (as opposed to working under low wages for large corporate entities).
  • They must belong to cooperatives that are run on a democratic basis.
  • The importers must pay a price that covers production costs, plus a “social premium” that can help improve the farmers’ working and living conditions. The price is set by FLO (currently $1.25 per pound, and if the coffee is organic there is a $.20 premium per pound).
  • Producers must pursue ecological goals, conserving natural resources and limiting chemical use.

According to a recent estimate, Fair Trade coffee farmers are earning an annual income of $2,000, as opposed to the $500 they would otherwise have earned. More than 80% of Fair Trade coffee sold in the United States is also Certified Organic.

The increased income Fair Trade creates allows cooperatives to re-invest in their farms, making them more ecologically sound and increasing coffee quality. Read more about Fair Trade in Stephanie Zonis’s article, Grounds For Confusion, Grounds For Change: The Complex World Of Organic Coffee.


Continue To Page 3: Organic-Certified, & Choosing A Coffee

Go To The Article Index Above


Recent Articles From Our NutriNibbles™ News Feed:

Subscribing notifies you whenever there are
new additions to the NutriNibbles™ section.

Subscribe to THE NIBBLE™ NutriNibbles™ by Email


Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved.  Images are the copyright of their respective owners.

© Copyright 2005-2018 Lifestyle Direct, Inc. All rights reserved. All images are copyrighted to their respective owners.