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Organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance Certified
Organic, Fair Trade, and Rainforest Alliance Certified Coffees
In recent years, concern has grown as to HOW food items and non-food crops are produced. To educate consumers on which products reflect best practices, several organizations have developed certifications to identify items that are produced using humane approaches and environmentally prudent methods—from free-range beef and poultry to organic fruits and vegetables. A number of these certifications apply to specialty coffee as well.
An organic coffee means that it has been grown using methods and materials that pose a low environmental impact. Agricultural practices include the maintenance of soil fertility, the reduction of toxic pesticides and fertilizers, and the development of a diverse environment. Shade-grown and bird-friendly coffees also reduce the need for pesticides.
Fair trade coffee is purchased directly from growers for a higher price than standard coffee. Fair trade promotes healthier working conditions and greater economic incentives for coffee farmers, resulting in higher quality coffee.
The Rainforest Alliance is devoted to sustainable farming and forestry. Agricultural expansion, for example, is responsible for 70% of deforestation, and poses the single largest threat to tropical forests. Rainforest Alliance certification supports millions of coffee farmers working to improve their lives while protecting the planet.
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