Coffee Certifications Explained
James Hoffmann James Hoffmann
1.57M subscribers

 Published On Jun 30, 2022

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This video breaks down four coffee certifications, and a couple of company's buying programs, into digestible sections, which I hope will help you make more informed decisions when buying coffee. There’s a lot of detail behind the logos that you see on bags of coffee in the grocery store and this video aims to clarify the different approaches these certifications take so you can decide which one best overlaps with your values.

0:00 Introduction to these six certifications
3:31 How I use Notion for this video & beyond
4:41 How to approach certifications
5:59 Price premiums for coffee
12:04 Farming practices
14:35 Labour Practices
16:20 Eligibility: who can get certified?
18:43 Who pays for the cost of certification?
20:33 How certifications impact coffee quality
23:00 Certifications in specialty coffee
24:49 Closing thoughts & feedback

Fairtrade International:

Other Fair Trade entities:
Fair Trade USA
Compliance checklist for Fairtrade International:

Rainforest Alliance:
Regenerative coffee scorecard:

Organic resources:

Smithsonian Bird Friendly:

Starbucks Coffee and Farmer Equity (C.A.F.E.) Practices:
SCS Global scorecards for Starbucks C.A.F.E. Practices:

Nespresso AAA Sustainable Quality Program:
Nespresso AAA Program & Agroforestry, Global Assessment Report 2014-2020:

Other Reports:
International Trade Center’s report ‘The Coffee Guide’, Fourth Edition, 2021

‘Coffee in crisis offers a lesson in resilience: evidence from Guatemala’: a COSA (Committee on Sustainability Assessment’) research paper, published by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations.

‘Impacts of Certification on Small Coffee Farmers’ Western Kenya, 2014-2017. Prepared by COSA for the ISEAL Alliance:

Special thanks to Daniele Giovannucci from the Committee on Sustainability Assessment for his time and insight.

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