Coffee, one of the world’s most traded commodities, is the economic pillar of countries throughout Latin America, Asia and Africa. However, farmers in these coffee-growing regions face many challenges, including poverty, commodity price fluctuations and increasingly erratic rainfall patterns caused by climate change. Since 1995, the Rainforest Alliance has reinforced the position of sustainable coffee farmers by training them in methods that boost returns and safeguard the health of the land for future generations. All of this is part of the Rainforest Alliance strategy to ensure the long-term well-being of farming communities, as well as the forests on which we all depend.
The impact of sourcing more sustainably through the Rainforest Alliance certification program can be seen in the concrete benefits for farmers, workers, their families, and the planet. The benefits can be broken down into the following categories: People, planet and profit.
The rights and well-being of people are the core principles on which certification is based. The Rainforest Alliance works with sustainable coffee farmers to improve their livelihoods and the health and well-being of their communities. Coffee farms that earn the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal are assessed annually against a rigorous standard with detailed environmental, social and economic criteria. These criteria are designed to protect biodiversity, deliver financial benefits to farmers, and adopt a culture of respect for workers and communities. Rainforest Alliance certification also promotes decent living and working conditions for workers, gender equality and access to education for children in farm communities.
Farmers in the Rainforest Alliance certification program use land, water and energy carefully, protecting natural resources and the environment in which they live and work. Coffee grows in harmony with nature: soils are healthy, waterways are protected, waste is reduced and recycled, wildlife thrives and migratory bird habitat flourishes. The farmers learn to protect forested and protected areas, which in turn helps support biodiversity of plants and animals. In addition, farmers are trained to use climate-smart agriculture techniques that sequester carbon and to adapt to the effects of a changing climate.
Independent studies demonstrate that farmers who use Rainforest Alliance sustainable methods increase yields and achieve cost savings through more efficient farm management. Achieving certification also helps farmers reach new markets, negotiate better prices, improve their access to credit and earn a premium on their beans that they can use to build a more economically secure future. That is good for farmers, their families, and their communities.
The benefits of Rainforest Alliance Certified™ coffee are significant. It creates a better future for people and nature by making responsible business the new normal. You can be confident that you are supporting the farmers, forest and communities who are looking after our natural resources whenever you choose to drink Woodland Coffee, proudly sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified™ farms. A coffee without compromise.