White Oak Pastures: Grass-fed Georgia Livestock 1

We believe White Oak Pastures is a gem in Southwest Georgia. Primarily a livestock farm and processing facility, White Oak Pastures stands out nationally for its sustainable farming practices and commitment to land stewardship, animal husbandry, and organics. Plus, the folks who work there are just so darn innovative, creative and committed to doing the right thing for their community, the land they live on and the animals that feed them.

7 internationally recognized principles to help guide cooperative business practices 2

These seven principles recognized by the United Nations help guide business practices at Cooperative Coffees and farmer’s coops around the world. Viva le co-op!

Understanding Roya: The Coffee Rust 3

Roya or coffee “rust” is an orange fungus that grows on the leaves of coffee plants causing them to wither and fall off.  We witnessed the effects in Guatemala.

Crowdfunding meets Trade Finance 4

Finding affordable financing is one of the greatest challenges facing small-scale coffee farmers. Like any business, farmer co-ops need access to capital until money starts coming in from their sales. Farmers need to make improvements to their land, investments in their crops and purchases that keep their families fed and children healthy.

“Now I know” by Scott Umstattd 5

In January of 2013, I had the opportunity to go with Cafe Campesino on a cooperative tour of Guatemala. Sure, we all know Cafe Campesino makes great coffee and that this great coffee is traded in a way the best serves the farmers who nurture and grow the beans, but to actually go out and meet the people in this supply chain made a tremendous difference in how I view an already superior product and business model. Through this trip, I was informed and reminded of this simple fact: what you purchase has direct consequences on others.

Our group on their first day in Guatemala

Our group including Mike Weaver of Sweetwater Organic Coffee and Dave Campbell of Cafe Campesino on their first day visiting Manos Campesinas in Guatemala.

Julia Salinas of LA FEM harvests ripe coffee cherries in Nicaragua. Photo by Julia Baumgartner for Cafe Campesino. September 2012

La Fundacion Entre Mujeres is a well-organized, all-woman NGO in northern Nicaragua committed to selling quality, Fair Trade coffee while empowering rural women

What’s the “Shade-Grown Coffee” thing all about? 6

It preserves ecologically diverse woodlands, provides habitat for hummingbirds, and keeps chemicals out of coffee fields away from farmers and local residents.