Most of our customers are aware of our commitment to ethical coffee and our relationship with Agros. One of the questions we are asked frequently is, “What does Agros do to create this change?” or (slightly summarized) “How does Agros work?.” Well, I wanted to take a second to share with you a quick glimpse of ethical coffee and Agros International.
Ethical Coffee and Agros
Agros.org states what they are on the front page in a nutshell:
“Agros International is committed to breaking the cycle of povery for rural families in Central America and Mexico by enabling landless communities to achieve land ownership and economic stability. Having learned that the root causes of poverty extend across communities and are passed down from generation to generation, the Agros development model is holistic, sustainable, and focused on long term results. This commitment to the long-term sustainability of a whole community serves to break the cycle of poverty in all its forms.”
By applying this same philosophy to sourcing coffee — we create ethical coffee. Ethical coffee is only Organic, Shade-Grown, and Fairly Traded.
Why organic coffee? By only purchasing USDA Certified Organic, our farmer’s are encouraged to make the safe choice for themselves and their families.
Why Shade-Grown? By only purchasing 100% shade-grown coffee we’re encouraging our farmer’s to prevent soil erosion and ensure the sustainability of their land.
By only purchasing our coffee at upwards of three times the price of fair trade coffee we are making a commitment to ethical coffee.
What makes Agros work is also what makes their organization a perfect fit for our Coffee Lover’s Club members. Agros is NOT an organization that makes a habit of giving out cash, services, or goods to “help” a needy family. They believe, as does CICR, that that doesn’t solve anything. Agros believes that giving a handout causes a dependancy that isn’t healthy and doesn’t promote self-sustainability. We believe ethical coffee comes from forming a stronger long-term partnership with coffee farmers. This ensures a helping hand not simply an unsustainable handout. Ethical coffee must be sustainable.
The Agros Model to Ethical Coffee
- Community Organization – “Help families define a vision for a new community and develop the local leadership required to create a self-sustaining, thriving community.”
- Land Ownership – “Work with families to identify and purchase agricultural land on credit and use their payments to purchase land for other new communities.”
- Community Education and Training – “Create opportunities for adequate healthcare, education, adult literacy and spiritual growth.”
- Housing and Infrastructure – “Implement community and individual construction projects such as houses, schools, irrigation systems, latrines, infrastructure and community centers.”
- Sustainable Economic Growth – “Develop agricultural production and support income-generating activities through microenterprise loans and technical training.”
- Passing on the Blessing – “Give other communities the opportunity to own land through repaid loans and empower them to dream of a brighter future for their children.”
read more in depth information here
We feel it’s important that you — the Coffee Lover’s Club member — knows exactly what ethical coffee means. We feel you should know what your purchases are doing to create hope for others.
Please check out Agros at the following links:
www.agros.org, on Facebook, on Twitter and watch some of their videos on our YouTube channel or the video page on our blog.
Dan – CICR