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Cafédirect

Who benefits

Cafédirect benefits the smallholder farmers in the developing world by buying their tea, coffee and cocoa at a fairtrade price together with reinvesting the profits to provide other forms of support and training.

Sharing the profits

On top of the Fairtrade social premiums Cafédrect pay for producer crops, the company invests up to 50% of its profits back into the grower communities it buys from. To date, that pledge has translated into more than £6 million for farmers, who receive not just funds, but real sustainable support via the Cafédirect Producers’ Foundation.

For a lot of its growers, Cafédirect was actually their first client, giving them access to the market and the opportunity to expand and meet new buyers.

When Cafédirect buy its coffee, tea and cocoa, it does not use use any middlemen. Instead, it works with all of its growers directly, ensuring a straight-forward, respectful and fair trade. Most of its producers even own shares in the business, making their working relationship more of an active partnership than anything else.


CEPICAFE coffee organisation in Piura, Northern Peru

The CEPICAFE co-operative has around 7,000 farming families living on the slopes of the Andes as members. Cafédirect buys 40% of their coffee exports, and has been co-financing community development projects since 2008. The biggest worry for coffee growers in Piura is water - the rainy season isn't as regular as it had been in the past and the overall rainfall is declining due to climate change. Cafédirect, working in partnership with German Technical Cooperation, has allowed the farmers to invest in local reservoirs and building canal/piping systems to capture rainwater and to bring it to their farms; and also to construct barriers to prevent soil erosion.


The people of Sao Tome

Cafédirect, in partnership with the International Fund for Agricultural Development and DfID, has been working closely with cocoa farmers in 11 villages around the Agua Izé region of São Tomé. Cafédirect has worked with these farmers since 2008 supporting them in increasing their capacity to process raw cocoa, resulting in better prices for farmers and a luxury hot chocolate for you to enjoy: São Tomé instant hot chocolate.

Adaptation for smallholders to climate change (AdapCC)

AdapCC is a pioneering project that supports the coffee and tea farmers of Cafédirect's supply chain in developing strategies to cope with the risks and impacts of climate change. The pilot projects, a public-private partnership between Cafédirect and the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ), aimed to create replicable examples of how smallholder farmers can successfully cope with the impacts of climate change and improve their access to financial and technical support.

The project ran between April 2007 and February 2010 in four countries; Nicaragua , Kenya, Mexico and Peru, across both tea and coffee producing growers.


Reforestation - Sierra Piura

Cafédirect works directly with smallholder growers to help them overcome challenges faced by climate change. As one of the four pilot groups of the AdapCC project, the cooperative of CEPICAFE began investigating linking adaptation among its coffee farmers in the Sierra Piura to the voluntary carbon market. Just adding more shade trees to the coffee farms at 1,200m wouldn't capture enough carbon to be viable, so a mutually beneficial agreement for a reforestation project had to be struck with the higher altitude communities near the town of Choco. By reforesting the degraded grasslands higher up at 3,200m, the project enables the local people, who live almost completely off subsistence agriculture, to receive a rare source of income by managing the tree nurseries and planting the seedlings.

They also own the trees, which are growing on communal land, and will eventually be able to sell sustainably harvested wood.

Once the planted trees have been certified to the CarbonFix standard, the carbon credits will be sold and 10% of the income will go to CEPICAFE, a unique example of using mitigation (or capturing carbon) to fund adaptation (or adjusting to the effects of the climate).

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