Developing sustainable coffee-growing regions
Coffee is a natural product and should be produced in harmony with people and nature.
Our Tchibo Joint Forces!® projects are limited to a given region, a period, a specific focus and to a number of people who see a positive change in their quality of life thanks to the projects.
Yet we also know that these project highlights must be complemented by work at regional level and throughout the sector.
Working closely with local organisations, representatives from civil society, international trading firms and other like-minded people, we are therefore forging alliances that seek to achieve the same common goal along the whole length of the supply chain: more sustainable coffee farming.
Examples of regional cooperation
Our participation in the Collective Action Initiative of the Global Coffee Platform (GCP) in Brazil represents a first milestone in this process. This initiative has reached around 1,000 farmers within the space of a year, providing them with training on topics such as the correct use of pesticides. Brazil was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, however, and a lot of the training could not be delivered as planned. However, any advanced training that can be done without face-to-face contact is still taking place.
In parallel with this, we have established partnerships with a number of suppliers with the aim of identifying and promoting alternative, environmentally friendly farming practices. In the south of the state of Minas Gerais, we are exploring approaches that strengthen biodiversity and protect both soil and water. Our goal is to establish sustainable coffee farms that work in harmony with nature – and are economically viable for the families.
In Vietnam, we have joined forces with the Global Coffee Platform to set up a Collective Action Initiative to reduce the use of agrochemicals in farming. As part of an ongoing research project, we are studying the use of agrochemicals in coffee cultivation in this region. It is particularly important to us that we work closely with local stakeholders in the region. Together, we are researching and developing agricultural practices that are more eco-friendly and that at the same time will ensure the economic viability of the farms.
We rely on colleagues who know the country, the people and the problems involved better than we do because they are active on the ground, like our representatives in Brazil and Vietnam. This allows us to better understand what challenges are most pressing at local level – and what support farmers and their families need to overcome them. Working in close collaboration with partners and suppliers, a roadmap is being developed which, just like in Brazil, will support farmers as they make the transition to more environmentally friendly farming practices.
This network allows us to ensure that our project activities continue to focus on the right areas, even when circumstances change, as they did with the COVID-19 outbreak, for example.