"Fair Trade – the absolute minimum necessary to get people to stop questioning how you source, or pushing you to do better. Not enough."
James Hoffmann, on his blog
This is a quote from Jim from a while back, and I was discussing it with someone recently. There’s a cafe nearby that is very proud to say “we think it’s important that we can offer an organic and fair-trade coffee”, as if it’s some great and lofty goal they’ve reached. Fair-trade is, at best, a starting point, and it’s not useful the way in which it’s been turned around to be the finish line (he mentions the lack of focus on traceability, quality based premium prices and direct trades, amongst others, as examples).
anyway, the point is that in specialty coffee, we can do better, and so we should.