Mar. 7, 2016
You know the feeling... it's a version of deja vu. You see something, and you say, "hey, I had that idea!" And now someone else has gone and implemented it! It's not regret. At least for me, it was joy that I did have a good idea and it was relief that someone else had implemented it and I didn't have to do all the work! Today that "great job guys" pat-on-the-back goes to Transparent Trade Coffee, http://transparenttradecoffee.org/home. They are providing third-party transparency on pricing in the coffee value chain. You can go to their database of self-registered roasters who are boasting about two numbers in particular: the per pound price paid for green coffee and a somewhat blackbox percentage called the "Effective Grower Share." This is a really laudable effort and I salute the folks at Goizetta/Emory University for pulling this off as well as they have.
TRANSPARENCY is one of the big issues that got me into the coffee business, and many others, obviously. Fair Trade is nice, but it requires putting a lot of faith in one single organization's ability to solve a lot of very big problems. The principal of transparency seems more elegant. The thought behind it simply, can we make it easier to find out how much the farmer made on this coffee? And if the farmers get more of the value through this improved market knowledge of everyone in the supply chain, then certainly the farmers will be able to work more effectively than any one organization on solving their own problems.
Thank you Transparent Trade Coffee for bringing us a step closer to this elegant way of conducting trade!