Friday, October 09, 2009

Fair Trade: What Price for Good Coffee?

Thanks to my friend Henry Lucas at the Spellman Museum for pointing out this important article from Time. The article describes efforts to raise the fair-trade minimum price from $1.35 to $2 per pound of coffee. It is a risky but perhaps necessary proposition. Some of my industry contacts quoted in the article express dismay that farm families are not adequately compensated, even at fair-trade prices. But a dramatic increase could greatly limit the number of families benefiting from the programs, and even well-meaning consumers might balk at paying the real price of production.

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