Growing coffee is not a simple task. As coffee is a perennial crop, the coffee farmers depend upon coffee for their livelihood. A stable income for these farmers is dependent upon a number of factors.
The process of farming for coffee is not only slow and tedious, but also has a lot of associated risks. Coffee is dependent upon several factors in nature to produce a good yield. Costa Rican farmers have reaped tremendous benefits from having their coffee plantations adjacent to tropical forests. The biodiversity in these forests has increased the productiveness of coffee in this area. Bees from the tropical forest cross-pollinate the coffee bushes and subsequently raise coffee yields and farm incomes. However, there are coffee farms in other parts of the world being ravaged by diseases that decrease the coffee yield.
As you can see, farmers are not only the first people in the supply chain, but also the first to suffer from the crisis. They put in the most work, yet get back the least. Let's take a moment to explore a year in the life of a coffee farmer.
Natural Resources Defense Council
Mr. ©Michiel Kuit
Expert on coffee farming Local Project Co-ordinator "Public Private Parnership" (PPP) project "Improvement of Coffee Quality and Sustainability of Coffee Production in Vietnam"
Khom 1 TT Khe Sanh, Huong Hoa, Quang Tri, Vietnam
Mr. Nguyen Van Chinh
Farming extension officer in Quang Tri Province.