OAKLAND, Calif. (October 1, 2021) — Fair Trade USA announces new and expanded commitments from partners on International Coffee Day and the celebration of its annual Just One Cup campaign challenging consumers and businesses alike to ask themselves, #DoesYourCoffeeDoMore?
With 48% of new coffee launches making a sustainability claim*, it has never been more important for retailers and brands to demonstrate responsible sourcing practices to shoppers. Furthermore, at-home coffee brewing is cemented as a habit for U.S. coffee drinkers. This demand for authenticity, combined with innovation in packaged coffee has led to an uptick in Fair Trade Certification, a third-party label that more than 63% of U.S. consumers recognize and trust.
The growth comes from major retailers and businesses offering private label coffee, demonstrating that responsibly sourced coffee can be both scalable for businesses and accessible to consumers. This year they are as follows:
Rising to the Challenge: Creating the world’s first fully sustainable agricultural product
For the 11th consecutive year, Keurig Dr Pepper (KDP) was the largest purchaser of fair trade coffee globally. This achievement comes on the back of the company reaching its commitment of 100% responsibly sourced coffees by 2020. The company reached its goal by purchasing coffee that is certified or verified to an accepted third-party sustainable sourcing program, including Fair Trade USA.
As part of Target’s commitment to the challenge and building on its success with Fair Trade USA Certified Good & Gather coffee in bags and single-cup-pods, the retailer will launch Fair Trade Certified aluminum espresso capsules. Target also achieved its 2022 goal of certifying 100% of its Good & Gather coffee in bags and pods as sustainable according to the Fair Trade USA standard or an equivalent this year.
ALDI committed to increasing its range of certified coffee products to more than 50% by 2025 to support its growing communities and protect biodiversity. ALDI will take this commitment all the way, by certifying 100% of its private label Barissimo and Simply Nature coffees by the end of 2022.
Kroger is building on its Simple Truth® brand’s participation in the Sustainable Coffee Challenge— which has achieved 100% Fair Trade Certified coffee in all available growing regions—by also committing to source 100% Fair Trade Certified coffee for its Private Selection® brand from international growing regions by mid-2022.
Bon Appétit Management Company, an on-site restaurant company, also joined the Sustainable Coffee Challenge by pledging to source all of its coffee from a third-party certified source by the end of 2021. These include Fair Trade USA and others or a vendor enrolled in the company's 'Farm to Fork' local sourcing program. Last year, Bon Appétit purchased 87% of its whole bean and ground coffee according to this commitment.
Westrock Coffee Company, one of the largest coffee, tea, and extracts providers in the US, committed to converting a specialty line to Fair Trade Certified by 2020, which the company achieved through private label lines. As part of this year’s Sustainable Coffee Challenge, the company has pledged to source 100% of its coffee responsibly by 2025.
Barrie House, a long-time purchaser of Fair Trade Certified coffee, this year pledged a full commitment to the Sustainable Coffee Challenge around the development and implementation of environmental and social programs promoting sustainability and gender equity in the coffee industry. Providing Fair Trade Certified Organic products for the majority of their branded Barrie House products was at the top of the roaster’s list.
Beyond the Sustainable Coffee Challenge
Companies made major strides in transparency elsewhere as well. CVS Pharmacy became the first-ever drugstore to carry 100% Fair Trade Certified products in its exclusive store brand, Gold Emblem®. The retailer’s exclusive grocery brand, now offers nine Fair Trade Certified coffee products in a variety of blends and roasts.
Looking across the Pacific, Kauai Coffee Company earned the distinction of producing triple-certified Hawaiian coffee. 100% Kauai Coffee® is Fair Trade Certified™, Rainforest Alliance Certified, and Non-GMO Project Verified – highlighting Fair Trade USA’s domestic certification at the largest coffee farm in the U.S.
“Taken together, these new launches and pledges mean that businesses see fair trade as a way to source responsibly and validate that claim to their customers, said Abby Ayers, Senior Director of Retail Partnerships. “And most importantly, they mean coffee farmers will be protected against volatile market prices and more resilient in the face of climate change and future crises.
Learn more about the benefits of partnering with Fair Trade USA.
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About Fair Trade USA
Fair Trade USA is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and the leading certifier of fair trade products in North America. Its trusted Fair Trade Certified seal on a product signifies that it was made according to rigorous fair trade standards that promote sustainable livelihoods and safe working conditions, protection of the environment, and strong, transparent supply chains. Rather than creating dependency on aid, Fair Trade USA’s model empowers farmers, workers, and fishermen to fight poverty and earn additional money to improve its communities. Winner of Fast Company’s Social Enterprise of the Year Award and recognized as a leading social venture by the Clinton Global Initiative, the Skoll Foundation, and Ashoka, Fair Trade USA also helps brands and retailers tell their stories of impact and educate consumers about the power of their purchase. The Fair Trade Certified seal represents thousands of products, improving millions of lives, protecting land and waterways in 62 countries and counting. Purchases have sent $846 million to farmers and workers since 1999.
About the Sustainable Coffee Challenge
The Sustainable Coffee Challenge is a collaborative effort of companies, governments, NGOs, research institutions, and others to transition the coffee sector to be fully sustainable. Challenge partners are urgently working together to increase transparency, align around a common vision for sustainability and collaborate to accelerate progress toward those goals. Launched during the 2015 Paris climate meetings with 18 founding partners, the Challenge aims to stimulate greater demand for sustainable coffee. The movement has since grown to more than 100 international partners.