Fair trade is the only hope for those dealing with the current coffee production dilemma. Fair Trade Certified coffee is grown on small farms and is mostly shade-grown and organic. Such coffee is grown by family farmers who act as stewards of the land. Persuading people to always embrace the fair trade solution and drink. Fair Trade Certified coffee provides a powerful alternative to the exploitation caused by the free market system. This solution offers a decent price to the farmers for their products and wipes out the miseries that the current crisis causes.
There are ways we can become involved and effectively use our purchasing power to help make a difference. Before you make your next coffee purchase look for the Fair Trade Certified label. When you purchase Fair Trade Certified coffee you are making a difference; you are guaranteeing that the farmers are being paid a fair price for their coffee. This ensures the farmers a brighter future.
The Global Activist's Manual: Local Ways to Change the World by Mike Prokosch, Laura Raymond (United for a Fair Economy)
The Fair Trade Fraud by James Bovard
Bean business basics: The definitive how-to manual for starting & operating a retail specialty coffee business by Ed Aryidson
International Coffee Organization
Fair Trade Coffee
Crisis in a Coffee Cup, Fortune Magazine, Nicholas Stein, December 9, 2002 - highly recommended reading
World View: Coffee Growers' Good Fortune Dries Up, Pittsburg Post-Gazette (reprint from LA Times), T. Christian Miller and Davan Maharaj, October 28, 2002.
Coffee Crisis - the Hard Realities that Fill Your Cup, MSNBC, August 26 - highly recommended viewing / reading
Waking Up to a World Coffee Crisis, St. Petersburg Times, David Adams, August 11, 2002
Grounds for Change