from independent farmers to farmer organizations

Farmer aggregation through effective and efficient farmer organizations could be one of the biggest development opportunities we have in coffee.  In previous posts, I and others have discussed the benefits of independent farmers getting organized : more access to credit and risk management tools, access to cheaper inputs, access to external assistance, stronger political presence, better access …

bringing farmers’ voice to improve our work

“I have participated in other workshops where people have ‘explained to me’ a set of standards.  This is the first time I am in a workshop to discuss the standards, and negotiate potential changes.  One thing is that somebody from outside, from an office somewhere writes a standard.  A very different thing is to improve …

an encouraging discussion on farmer aggregation

Last month I attended the International Coffee Organization’s (ICO) 3rd Coffee Finance Forum in Brazil during ICO’s 50th anniversary meeting.  ICO meetings are open to country delegates, observers and guests from 70 countries, both producing and consuming countries.    The objective of the 3rd Coffee Finance Forum was to identify best practices and disseminate information to …

The Silent Majority: Independent Smallholder Coffee Farmers

Last month, during the Specialty Coffee Association of America conference in Boston, I had the privilege of organizing a panel about the need to include independent smallholder coffee farmers in the industry’s sustainability efforts.   These coffee farmers are smallholders who are not organized in a cooperative or other type of farmer organization.  The panel included: …