We've always believed in a better cup of coffee.
We've always believed in buying and serving the best coffee possible. And it's our goal for all of our coffee to be grown under the highest standards of quality, using ethical trading and responsible growing practices. We think it's a better cup of coffee that also helps create a better future for farmers and a more stable climate for the planet.
Starbucks bought 385 million pounds of coffee in 2008. Seventy-seven percent of that – 295 million pounds – was responsibly grown and ethically traded, meeting Starbucks™ Shared Planet™ ethical sourcing principles for coffee.
By 2015, our goal is to buy 100 percent of our coffee this way. We're working every day with farmers in coffee-growing countries to make this possible. Last year, our ethical sourcing principles for coffee impacted more than one million farmers and workers.
10 years of partnership with Conservation International.
For more than a decade, Starbucks and Conservation International (CI) have been working together to help farmers grow coffee in a way that's better for both people and the planet. CI helped us develop our buying guidelines for environmentally, socially and economically responsible coffee. And now we're working together on a new climate change initiative that takes conservation beyond coffee farms to the surrounding landscapes.
Better growing methods means better coffee.
We're always working to build the supply of coffee available for purchase under our Starbucks™ Shared Planet™ principles. One of the main ways we're doing this is by working hand-in-hand with farmers in coffee-growing communities.
The Starbucks Farmer Support Center we opened in Costa Rica in 2004 allows our team of agronomists and quality experts to be in the field, working directly with farmers to develop and use more responsible methods to grow better coffee, to help improve the quality and size of the harvest – and ultimately earn better prices for it.
In 2008, we expanded our on-the-ground presence in Africa, hiring a director of agronomy to oversee the new Farmer Support Center in Rwanda. We also remain committed to opening a Farmer Support Center in Ethiopia in the future.
Working with farmers and coffee-growing communities.
In addition to our work with Conservation International and Starbucks ethical coffee buying guidelines, here are some other ways Starbucks is working with coffee-growing communities:
· Supporting farmers with small-scale farms and who grow Fair Trade coffee
· Paying the prices that high quality coffee commands
· Buying Certified Organic coffee
· Helping conserve wildlife and biodiversity in Africa's coffee regions through the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF)
· Investing in a better future for farmers through loan programs
· Involving our partners and customers in our work with coffee farmers in Costa Rica with Earthwatch Expeditions (additional information can be found on their website: http://www.earthwatch.org/expedition)
We are taking what we've learned through our work with coffee farmers and applying it to other products.
100% of our coffee will be responsibly grown, ethically traded. Although we've reached 75% of this goal, the remaining 25% will by far be the hardest. Reaching this goal will require work to bring more existing farmers into our Shared Planet program, and identifying new farmers for participation. We opened the new Farmer Support Center in Rwanda to help our expansion of SSP coffee in Africa, an important step in our journey.