Fair Trade vs Direct Trade 

Fair Trade Standards

  • Coffee is purchased exclusively from cooperatives.
  • A predetermined minimum price per pound is paid to the cooperative.
  • Access to credit provided by the roaster.
  • Price premium promotes community development.
  • Child labor, forced labor, and workplace discrimination are prohibited.
  • Growing practices that promote environmental sustainability are required.
  • Certification provides transparency of relations between buyers and cooperatives.


Direct Trade Principles

  • Coffee purchased from a range of farm structures and individuals farmers.
  • Price paid per pound goes directly to the farmer.
  • A close relationship with producers improve quality and increase value.
  • Direct, ongoing, sustained contact between buyer and producers.
  • Improves economic sustainability of small farms and producers.
  • Guarantee social sustainability of producers.
  • Encourage environmental sustainability and community development.
  • Complete transparency.

Check back for future blogs on the advantages and disadvantages of both.. 
Related links: http://www.pbs.org/food/features/lexicon-of-sustainability-fair-trade-vs-direct-trade/ 

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