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Mainstreaming Sustainable Coffee

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Abstract

This overview article examines the various dimensions of sustainable coffee as well as the actors involved and their perceptions of how to advance the market from niche to mainstream. The issues at hand are very complex, with different types of coffee producers, manufacturing/roasting companies and consumers, and a variety of standards, all with their own peculiarities and views on what is the best approach, and characterized by a divergent potential for ‘scaling up’. Policymakers, managers and NGOs thus face difficult choices as to which path to pursue as there is no clear consensus on a concrete ‘solution’ to this ‘wicked problem’. The article analyses the market for sustainable coffee, the different types of certified coffee available and their peculiarities considering production and supply perspectives, in relation to consumers who buy the final product. Implications are discussed as well, in the context of complexity and confusion, and the need for more complementarity. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.

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... Farmers are frequently very familiar with the features and needs of the land; they often feel intrinsically connected with the natural world and share this knowledge with NGOs (Akenroye et al., 2021;Kolk, 2013;Macdonald, 2007). Concurrently, NGOs "have proven to be the most active supporters" of farmers (Adams & Ghaly, 2007, p. 238) and extend their support by conveying training and helping to build market linkages (Bacon, 2005;Parrish et al., 2005). ...
... Parrish et al. (2005), for instance, pinpoint how Fairtrade certification helps farmers in Tanzania institutionalize local-global relations. Nonetheless, the high financial cost incurred requires farmers to further invest, to turn this price premium into additional income (Giovannucci & Ponte, 2005;Kolk, 2013;Neilson, 2008). ...
... However, farmers are frequently very well acquainted with the features and needs of the land and are deeply connected with the natural world, from which they obtain the resources to survive in their daily life. They often share such knowledge with NGOs, from which they receive most support (Adams & Ghaly, 2007;Akenroye et al., 2021;Kolk, 2013). ...
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Despite the attention to governance strategies based on international market intervention and product differentiation, research on how farmers and NGOs collaborate and share knowledge in production countries to help address sustainability challenges bottom-up remains limited. Through evidence from the coffee supply chain, this article endorses a human ecology viewpoint and shows how farmer-NGO collaboration in domestic markets can help foster relevant environmental, social, and economic upgrades. More significantly, it provides evidence of the importance of farmer-NGO collaboration for business strategy and indicates how NGOs can help farmers to grow as independent business owners and build their own market channels locally. By conceptualizing a strategic framework of farmer-NGO collaboration to better overcome sustainability challenges bottom-up and empower farmers as independent business owners, while also outlining the possible unintended consequences of such collaboration, this article finally contributes to the literature on the coffee supply chain and offers generalizable takeaways for NGO strategy.
... Lenschow et al. (2015) describe how interdependencies between distal social-ecological systems require new governance approaches that include but also move beyond state-led approaches. Kolk (2013) examines whether alternative trade arrangements have the ability to create changes in perceptions of consumers in the global north or at farming practices of producers in the global south through certification programs. It is fair to say that teleconnections and especially global trade arrangements perpetuate the tendency to disconnect consumers from producers, leading to unsustainable consumption behavior without the awareness of triggering negative outcomes at the place of product origin Ives et al., 2018). ...
... Proponents try to facilitate trust and long-term relationships that create reliable trade relations through frequent dialogue and transparency (Bacon, 2005). Consequently, efforts have been made to establish comparable regulation standards that resulted in certification schemes like Fairtrade, UTZ and Rainforest Alliance (Kolk, 2013). These schemes are used to create commonly accepted requirements and make them traceable and comparable (Raynolds, 2009). ...
... Additionally, the perspectives of producers are increasingly investigated within the scientific literature. Kolk (2013) reports on the complex interdependencies between certified markets and the empowerment of coffee producers. Blackman and Rivera (2011) are criticizing the methodological approaches authors in the field use to find out about the impact certification can have on the well-being of producers. ...
Article
This systematic review provides an overview of the various perspectives that investigate alternative trade arrangements in the global food sector. With child labor in cocoa production, health issues of plantation workers in the global south and unsustainable consumption patterns of consumers in the global north, trade arrangements in the global food sector remain on largely unsustainable pathways with vast consequences for a sustainable development. Alternative Trade arrangements have been proposed as one way to tackle the above-mentioned issues and have been increasingly investigated through the scientific literature. However, evidence about the impact of alternative trade arrangements on consumption in the global north or production in the global south is disputed. While there have been efforts to review the scientific literature, existing reviews have focused only on specific aspects (e.g. consumer perception or effectiveness of producer certification schemes). We therefore systematically reviewed 649 peer-reviewed publications that investigated food products and alternative trade arrangements to create a more comprehensive overview of the strand of literature, its epistemic similarities and differences. We found that the scientific literature is predominantly investigating the certified market, focusing on certification schemes and its implementations. Furthermore, we show that the literature is either focusing on producers or consumers and has a strong bias towards social aspects of sustainability. Using a quantitative word-based analysis, we identified three substantially different clusters: first, producer impact assessment, dominated by econometrics; second, contextual producer perspectives, emphasizing the political and social sphere through qualitative single case study analyses; and third consumers' attitudes and willingness to pay for ethical products, characterized by psychological and econometric measures. Based on our findings we propose three future directions for research in the field of alternative trade. First, scholars should put a stronger emphasis on going beyond the impact assessment of certification schemes and examine underlying aspects such as information asymmetries, smallholder empowerment and ethical consumption behavior. Second, interconnections between social and ecological factors needs further investigation as both factors have a strong influence on each other. Third, scholars should put a stronger focus on participatory approaches to gain a deeper understanding of root causes of unjust trade arrangements and enhance mutual understanding of scientific perceptions and realworld practices.
... Mainstream market VSS are marketing tools increasingly used by dominant actors in the coffee value chain to build trust among consumers who value sustainable-sourced coffee (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013;Levy et al. 2016). These VSS are instrumental in coffee brand building among roasters and retailers, primarily in Europe and the United States (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013;Levy et al. 2016). ...
... Mainstream market VSS are marketing tools increasingly used by dominant actors in the coffee value chain to build trust among consumers who value sustainable-sourced coffee (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013;Levy et al. 2016). These VSS are instrumental in coffee brand building among roasters and retailers, primarily in Europe and the United States (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013;Levy et al. 2016). Mass market sustainability certification relies on sourcing of certified coffee from different coffee-producing countries to secure supply (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013 Hence, for reasons of trust and recognition at the brand level, the sustainability assurance provided by these standards does not discriminate between high-biodiversity, shade-grown, and low-biodiversity sun-exposed coffee farming. ...
... These VSS are instrumental in coffee brand building among roasters and retailers, primarily in Europe and the United States (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013;Levy et al. 2016). Mass market sustainability certification relies on sourcing of certified coffee from different coffee-producing countries to secure supply (Blackmore et al. 2012;Kolk 2013 Hence, for reasons of trust and recognition at the brand level, the sustainability assurance provided by these standards does not discriminate between high-biodiversity, shade-grown, and low-biodiversity sun-exposed coffee farming. Blending technology enables coffee roasters to mix and substitute coffees from different origins, qualities, and of different environmental and social standards as long as minimum criteria are met (Muradian and Pelupessy 2005;Varangis et al. 2003;Vellema et al. 2003). ...
Article
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This article investigates the outcomes of mainstream coffee voluntary sustainability standards for high-biodiversity coffee diversification. By viewing voluntary sustainability standards certifications as performative marketing tools, we address the question of how such certification schemes affect coffee value creation based on unique biodiversity conservation properties in coffee farming. To date, the voluntary sustainability standards literature has primarily approached biodiversity conservation in coffee farming in the context of financial remuneration to coffee farmers. The performative analysis of voluntary sustainability standards certification undertaken in this paper, in which such certifications are analyzed in terms of their effect on mutually reinforcing representational, normalizing and exchange practices, provides an understanding of coffee diversification potential as dependent on standard criteria and voluntary sustainability standards certification as branding tools. We draw on a case of high-biodiversity, shade-grown coffee-farming practice in Kodagu, South-West India, which represents one of the world's biodiversity "hotspots".
... The farmers' difficulties were widely reported in the media and academic literature, generating increased scrutiny to high profile brands and prompting Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) and consumer advocates to press for the adoption of farmer support programs [11,[16][17][18], among many others). Many of these brands shared these objectives and began their path to sustainability of their supply chain through different certification schemes that provided them with additional differentiation attributes and reduced their reputational risks [1,8,14,[19][20][21][22]. ...
... Critical voices present VSS as strategies from the North limiting the local scope of decision making, imposing high transaction costs on growers and squeezing out small-holders not being able to comply with certification standards [9,14,30]. In the context of diverse types of growers, processors, consumers and a variety of standards, all having their own peculiarities, strengths, limitations and views on what is the best approach for scaling up, policy-makers, managers and organizations advocating for VSS coffees face difficult choices as to which path to pursue [21,31]. In addition, the presence of VSS in the mainstream segments has not significantly changed the competitive dynamics of major roasters selling in traditional channels. ...
... During the low price years, the valued-added markets based on VSS coffees seemed to be a promising tool for smallholders in developing regions, particularly for Organic and Fairtrade products [8,11,14,19,21,41,[57][58][59][60][61]. These and other schemes were designed to offer an alternative to the conventional commodity market regime by challenging market competitiveness based solely on price [61] and by better valorizing local resources and internalizing social and environmental costs of production [61][62][63]. ...
Article
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As one of the world’s most traded agricultural commodities, coffee constitutes a significant part of the overall economy and a major source of foreign revenue for many developing countries. Coffee also touches a large portion of the world’s population in the South, where it is mainly produced, and in the North, where it is primarily consumed. As a product frequently purchased by a significant share of worldwide consumers on a daily basis in social occasions, the coffee industry has earned a high profile that also attracts the interest of non-governmental organizations, governments, multilateral organizations and development specialists and has been an early adopter of Voluntary Sustainability Standards (VSS). Responding to the trend of increased interest on sustainability, it is therefore not surprising that coffee continues to be at the forefront of sustainability initiatives that transcend into other agricultural industries. Based on literature and authors’ experiences, this article reflects on the VSS evolution and considers a sustainability model that specifically incorporates producers’ local realities and deals with the complex scenario of sustainability challenges in producing regions. Agreeing on a joint sustainability approach with farmers’ effective involvement is necessary so that the industry as a whole (up and downstream value chain actors) can legitimately communicate its own sustainability priorities. This top-down/bottom-up approach could also lead to origin-based, actionable and focused sustainability key performance indicators, relevant for producers and consistent with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The initiative also aims to provide a sustainability platform for single origin coffees and Geographical Indications (GIs) in accordance with growers’ own realities and regions, providing the credibility that consumers now expect from sustainability initiatives, additional differentiation options for origin coffees and economic upgrade opportunities for farmers.
... É sabido que a adoção de certificação envolve o atendimento a uma série de exigências o que envolve a realização de investimentos. Mas, não há consenso sobre os possíveis ganhos para os produtores advindos deste investimento (Henson & Humphrey, 2009;Kolk, 2013b;Raynaud, Sauvee, & Valceschini, 2005). ...
... Ele também é o certificado mais antigo e seu ponto de origem foi o suporte a pequenos produtores. Os certificados Orgânico e Rainforest têm suas origens relacionadas a proteção do ecossistema e da biodiversidade (Kolk, 2013b). ...
... O McDonalds usa café certificado Rainforest no Reino Unido e na Alemanha o café certificado UTZ, fornecido pela Sara Lee. Por fim, vale lembrar que os certificados Fairtrade, Orgânico e Rainforest são aqueles que possuem monitoramento e certificação independente (Kolk, 2013b ...
Article
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This paper aims to analyze the national and international scientific literature concerning to sustainable coffee certification, which is published in journals indexed to Web of Science and Scielo. A systematic review of the literature was used to obtain an overview and propose some perspectives for the development of Sustainable coffee certification. The main achievements are the construction of a summary of the key features of sustainable certifications for coffee with greater representation in the sample and, to propose a research agenda from to the observed gaps.
... É sabido que a adoção de certificação envolve o atendimento a uma série de exigências o que envolve a realização de investimentos. Mas, não há consenso sobre os possíveis ganhos para os produtores advindos deste investimento (Henson & Humphrey, 2009;Kolk, 2013b;Raynaud, Sauvee, & Valceschini, 2005). ...
... Ele também é o certificado mais antigo e seu ponto de origem foi o suporte a pequenos produtores. Os certificados Orgânico e Rainforest têm suas origens relacionadas a proteção do ecossistema e da biodiversidade (Kolk, 2013b). ...
... O McDonalds usa café certificado Rainforest no Reino Unido e na Alemanha o café certificado UTZ, fornecido pela Sara Lee. Por fim, vale lembrar que os certificados Fairtrade, Orgânico e Rainforest são aqueles que possuem monitoramento e certificação independente (Kolk, 2013b ...
Article
Full-text available
This paper aims to analyze the national and international scientific literature concerning to sustainable coffee certification, which is published in journals indexed to Web of Science and Scielo. A systematic review of the literature was used to obtain an overview and propose some perspectives for the development of Sustainable coffee certification. The main achievements are the construction of a summary of the key features of sustainable certifications for coffee with greater representation in the sample and, to propose a research agenda from to the observed gaps.
... Yet others emphasize the standardizing effect of these organizations, creating norms for conformity that organizations occupying a field need to comply with (Reinecke et al., 2012). Some scholars are interested in these organizations as devices for corporations to manage their societal agendas, and engage in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) (Kolk, 2011). Finally, some studies analyze these organizations in light of their ability to get corporations to collaborate on developmental agendas, and partner with each other, with governments and with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) (Visseren-Hamakers and Glasbergen, 2007). ...
... Scaling up of sustainability-standards by food brands requires existing PSOs to efficiently move larger bulks of farmers and their lands through standardization and certification procedures. Qualitative study indicates that some business participants think that existing PSOs move too slowly here, and develop cumbersome regulations that farmers need to abide by before they can get certified (Kolk, 2011;cf. Fransen, 2015). ...
Article
Three narratives predominate about what drives change in the governance of private sustainability-standards in global supply chains. All three narratives present a pathway of change in which standard-setting as a form of regulatory governance is likely to remain relevant for the politics of sustainable production. This commentary proposes a fourth narrative of change. It argues that in some prominent sectors firms develop new policy instruments that strip sustainability interventions in supply chains from their regulatory governance qualities. Standard-setting organizations themselves meanwhile expand functions that are not of a regulatory governance nature. In this pathway, standard-setting organizations move in a different direction than the other three: away from certification and regulatory governance as core business.
... The original motivations for certifying coffee production were social in nature, with pioneering labels such as Max Havelaar and FairTrade aiming to give farmers a fair price and improved access to foreign buyers (Giovannucci and Koekoek 2003;Tayleur et al. 2017). Other certification programmes, including the Rainforest Alliance's (RA's) Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN), were driven primarily by non-governmental organisations (NGOs), with a broader mandate to incorporate both environmental and social concerns (Sasser 2003;Cashore et al. 2004;Auld et al. 2008;Kolk 2013). Nevertheless, across all certification schemes, the way in which earnings from the lucrative coffee crop are distributed along the supply chain is the subject of much contestation (Dicum and Luttinger 1999;Charveriat 2001;Gresser and Tickell 2002;Talbot 2004;Raynolds et al. 2007;Raynolds 2009;Pinto et al. 2014). ...
... Equity has been a particularly strong focus of research within the coffee sector (Bray et al. 2002;Raynolds 2002;Bacon 2008;Lyon et al. 2010). Possible reasons for this equity focus include the major role that smallholders play in coffee production worldwide (Charveriat 2001;Gresser and Tickell 2002;IBGE 2006;Potts et al. 2014); the volatility of global coffee prices and associated labour market insecurity (Gereffi and Korzeniewicz 1994;Ponte and Gibbon 2005;Malan 2013;Kolk 2013;Jena et al. 2017); and the narrow share of profits allocated to farmers in the sector (e.g. Raynolds et al. 2007;Bacon 2008;Beuchelt and Zeller 2011;Rueda and Lambin 2013, etc.). ...
... There is a global consensus that by-products from coffee processing face socio-economic and environmental crises that have become a focus of attention in many countries (World Bank., 2005).To answer this crisis, the issue of developing the coffee industry on an ongoing basis. Sustainability has evolved as a process and principle that links socio-economic development with management and conservation without damaging the environment (Reinecke, Manning and von Hagen, 2012;Kolk, 2013Kolk, , 2014 and strengthened by institutional reform. ...
... Based on the social attributes of sustainability, the skills of coffee entrepreneurs will increase significantly as a result of the accumulation of increased technical skills from training and workshops programs organized by several institutions such as extension agents, universities, and research institutions, these findings support the results of the study Jaya, Machfud and Ismail, 2013;Kolk, 2013;Samper and Quiñones-Ruiz, 2017). In addition, environmental management and conservation through composting of pulp that is free of pollutants can minimize production costs and also provide added value to coffee farmers, these results are relevant to (Babbar and Zak, 1995;Gobbi, 2000;Rubin and Hyman, 2000). ...
... Assim, a eficácia da proposta depende da percepção e disposição dos agentes que vão viver com os resultados e mudanças que o programa certamente exige. Esses podem ter percepções diferenciadas sobre o seu papel e os objetivos a serem atingidos (Kolk, 2013;Luis et al., 2006;Nadvi, 2008;Silva & Teixeira, 2016). ...
... Ao desenvolver as novas competências regionais e ampará-las em mecanismos formais, como indicações geográficas e indicações de procedência, a região acaba por valorar os recursos tangíveis e intangíveis nas estratégias de diferenciação, reforçando a região como lócus de cafés diferenciados. As regiões, ao apostarem em certificações, como ferramentas de marketing que criam valor para o café (Kolk, 2013;Méndez et al., 2010), levam para o mercado a essência da região, os processos produtivos, a cultura, os valores e a história como elementos que criam valor, pois são raros, insubstituíveis e não imitáveis, servindo como ferramenta competitiva que fortalece o território e o ambiente produtivo local. ...
Article
Full-text available
A marca “Cafés do Brasil” tem muitos aromas, sabores, notas e experiências a serem explorados no mercado. Contudo, a dinâmica de valorização passa por distintos contextos de produção e coordenação. O objetivo deste trabalho foi identificar as implicações dos diferentes contextos de produção e coordenação sobre a institucionalização da marca “Cafés do Brasil”. Por meio da análise de conteúdo, buscou-se captar nas propagandas e demais informações dos sites das organizações coletivas recursos e competências essências usados nas orientações estratégicas. As informações foram analisadas no software Iramuteq. Observou-se que as cooperativas são os agentes impulsionadores de novas competências e capacidades locais. Essas têm construído uma estrutura de coordenação voltada para a defesa dos cafés locais no mercado. Essa estrutura coloca os produtores e gestores em uma curva de aprendizado mais acentuada que orienta a construção das estratégias com base nos recursos locais. Conclui-se que a diversidade de contextos evidencia possibilidades de ligações, estratégias e interesses que orientam ações e decisões, inviabilizando a adoção de uma estratégia de marketing único para toda a cadeia.
... The original motivations for certifying coffee production were social in nature, with pioneering labels such as Max Havelaar and FairTrade aiming to give farmers a fair price and improved access to foreign buyers (Giovannucci and Koekoek 2003;Tayleur et al. 2017). Other certification programmes, including the Rainforest Alliance's (RA's) Sustainable Agriculture Network (SAN), were driven primarily by non-governmental organisations (NGOs), with a broader mandate to incorporate both environmental and social concerns (Sasser 2003;Cashore et al. 2004;Auld et al. 2008;Kolk 2013). Nevertheless, across all certification schemes, the way in which earnings from the lucrative coffee crop are distributed along the supply chain is the subject of much contestation (Dicum and Luttinger 1999;Charveriat 2001;Gresser and Tickell 2002;Talbot 2004;Raynolds et al. 2007;Raynolds 2009;Pinto et al. 2014). ...
... Equity has been a particularly strong focus of research within the coffee sector (Bray et al. 2002;Raynolds 2002;Bacon 2008;Lyon et al. 2010). Possible reasons for this equity focus include the major role that smallholders play in coffee production worldwide (Charveriat 2001;Gresser and Tickell 2002;IBGE 2006;Potts et al. 2014); the volatility of global coffee prices and associated labour market insecurity (Gereffi and Korzeniewicz 1994;Ponte and Gibbon 2005;Malan 2013;Kolk 2013;Jena et al. 2017); and the narrow share of profits allocated to farmers in the sector (e.g. Raynolds et al. 2007;Bacon 2008;Beuchelt and Zeller 2011;Rueda and Lambin 2013, etc.). ...
Article
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This paper addresses the relationship between compliance with social performance criteria (the social outcomes that must be achieved for certification) and procedural (management) criteria and this relationship’s significance for social equity at both farm and wider landscape levels. We consider social performance compliance to be pertinent to farm-level equity, and the relative compliance of small versus large farms to be pertinent to landscape-level equity. Certification’s management requirements are often deemed disproportionately burdensome for small, resource-poor producers, and hence a barrier to landscape-level equity. There is a lack of research examining how management criteria impact the ability of different sized farms to meet certification’s social performance requirements. We analysed 435 certification audits, covering all Brazilian coffee farms that sought Rainforest Alliance certification from 2006 to 2014 inclusive: 80 individual farms and 23 groups of farms. In principle, undergoing group certification permits smallholders to benefit from economies of scale. Our analysis revealed a statistically significant, positive correlation between compliance with procedural (managing sustainability plans) and social performance criteria. This correlation was stronger for groups than individual farms. Group farms’ compliance was statistically equivalent to that of individual farms, suggesting that group certification is achieving its intended purpose of socio-economic levelling of certified farmers. Over time, certified farms’ average compliances improved. Our findings suggest that management requirements play an important role in improving smallholders’ overall social sustainability performance and that group certification may help resource-poor smallholders achieve those requirements. Further work is required to understand causal mechanisms underlying the relationships we present.
... Coffee buyers, roasters, and retailers contributed to the early and widespread adoption of foundational sustainability certifications like Fairtrade for fair trade and Organic coffee [8]. Market demand for certifications that addressed social, economic, and environmental challenges in coffee producing communities led to the development of a variety of voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) by the private sector [9]. In response to consumer demand, the VSS trend expanded from third-party certifiers to private coffee corporations, such as Starbucks and Nespresso, that developed their own standards (CAFE and 4AAA respectively) [9]. ...
... Market demand for certifications that addressed social, economic, and environmental challenges in coffee producing communities led to the development of a variety of voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) by the private sector [9]. In response to consumer demand, the VSS trend expanded from third-party certifiers to private coffee corporations, such as Starbucks and Nespresso, that developed their own standards (CAFE and 4AAA respectively) [9]. Many of these sustainability standards have been top-down, designed with the economic and marketing goals of the certifier rather than the coffee producer in mind [10,11]. ...
Article
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Smallholder coffee producers are the foundation of the specialty coffee industry and are currently facing a set of challenges that threaten the sustainability of the industry. Movement towards a more sustainable specialty coffee sector requires strong collaboration between interdisciplinary researchers and industry stakeholders to develop research projects and interventions that address critical social, economic, and environmental threats to the industry. To improve upon past sector initiatives it is essential that cross-sector collaboration better incorporate and center coffee farmers’ voices, which have often been absent from top-down interventions. This article describes one such collaboration, which investigated agronomic and market system needs of the Guatemalan smallholder coffee sector. We conducted participatory interviews with 33 coffee producers and 22 non-producer key informants, and used mixed-methods analysis of the interview data to better understand the key challenges facing smallholder coffee producers in Guatemala. The following factors emerged: pests and diseases, climate change, price, labor, nutrient management, market access, yield, nurseries and transplants, and technical assistance. Cross-sector, interdisciplinary collaborations that directly address these areas would directly improve the long-term sustainability of the coffee industry by reducing pressures currently limiting specialty coffee production. This research framework can also serve as a model for others interested in conducting interdisciplinary, cross-sector research.
... Comparative assessments of certification schemes operating in the same rural areas have focused primarily on organic standards (and fair trade), which were set up for smallholders in developing or emerging countries who produced for export to developed countries (e.g., Kolk, 2013;Riisgaard et al., 2009). Dorr (2011) compared fair trade, Global Gap and organic certification in Brazil, focusing on the requirements that farmers had to meet. ...
Article
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The organic certification schemes, which propose links between smallholders and domestic markets in developing and emerging countries, are increasingly diverse. The study compared smallholders’ involvement in four types of organic certification schemes in Thailand, from farmers’ perspective. Three of these schemes were based on third-party certification and were managed by a public institute, an accredited non-governmental organisation, and a non-accredited one. The other schemes were participatory guarantee systems. One hundred farmers were interviewed. The farmers expressed a general similar assessment of the four types of schemes, in terms of the difficulties of obtaining certification. A key reason was that the scheme that had the most strict requirements was also the one providing the strongest support. The schemes mainly differed in terms of marketing opportunities. However, the organisations, which provided support to farmers wishing to obtain certification, generally recommended a particular scheme. Farmers had limited autonomy in initiating a certification process by themselves. Farmers’ capacities may be built so that they become more autonomous in choosing the certification schemes that best suit their objectives.
... In this scenario, the credibility of the standards may come into question as criteria for producer compliance are relaxed. For consumers and producers alike, the consequence of multiple standards is also thought to be confusion over multiple and ambiguous claims by eco-labeled products (e.g., Harbaugh, Maxwell, & Roussillon, 2011;Kolk, 2013). But despite these various claims, the actual effect of multiple standards for producers and consumers remains unclear. ...
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The presence of multiple eco-certification standards for sustainable aquaculture is thought to create confusion and add cost for producers and consumers alike. To ensure their quality and consistency, a range of so-called metagovernance arrangements have emerged that seek to provide harmonized quality assurance over these standards. This article aims to answer the question of how these metagovernance arrangements differ and whether they actually reduce confusion, with a focus on aquaculture in Southeast Asia. We compare three metagovernance arrangements, the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative, the International Social and Environmental Accreditation and Labelling Alliance, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Good Aquaculture Practices, with respect to differences in their goals, their levels of inclusiveness, and their internal governance arrangement. The findings indicate that these metagovernance arrangements differ with respect to their goals and approaches and do not seem to directly reduce confusion. More critically, they represent a new arena for competition among market, state, and civil society actors in controlling the means of regulation when aiming for more sustainable aquaculture production.
... There is also the need for external stimuli to also be injected across coffee networks to derive greater sustainability, not limited to infrastructural developments, knowledge transfer, microfinancing schemes and market access (inter alia Gerard et al., 2021;Iza and Dentoni, 2020;Lemeilleur et al., 2020). Synthesising the outcomes of extant literature reveals complex and intricate relations that are inter-dependent on the numerous coffee stakeholders within the AFVC (Kolk, 2013). ...
Article
Purpose This paper aims to reconceptualise entrenched supply chains associated with coffee production and consumption to digital supply chains for sustainable development. Design/methodology/approach A case study of seven small businesses involved with Philippine coffee is employed to examine how coffee value chains should be envisioned following COVID-19. Findings The COVID-19 pandemic reveals truncated barriers concerned with the lack of infrastructure, poverty cycles, sporadic workforce development policies and financial pressures that need to be redefined for coffee production and consumption to be more sustainable in the future. Research limitations/implications The study is restricted to a single country and a small pool of respondents that may not reflect similar practices in other regions or contexts. Originality/value This paper illuminates the plight of coffee farmers in an emerging production landscape of the Philippines, and develops new propositions to envision a digital value chain post-COVID-19.
... Some of these practices offer incremental improvements to the sustainability performance of coffee production (Zerbe, 2014;Winter et al., 2020). However, while about 25% of coffee traded globally is certified in one way or the other (Lernoud et al., 2018), this often does not improve smallholder farmers' livelihoods (Chiputwa et al., 2015), but rather benefits roasters or retailers (Valkila et al., 2010;Kolk, 2013;Dragusanu and Nunn, 2018). While there is evidence that some certificates perform well under specific circumstances (e.g., Parrish et al., 2005), there are often trade-offs between economic and environmental outcomes (Vanderhaegen et al., 2018). ...
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Despite improvements, international food supply in general and coffee supply in particular continue to cause significant greenhouse gas emissions, economic inequities, and negative impacts on human well-being. There is agreement that dominant economic paradigms need to change to comply with the sustainability principles of environmental integrity, economic resilience, and social equity. However, so far, little empirical evidence has been generated to what extent and under which conditions sustainable international coffee supply could be realized through small intermediary businesses such as roasteries, breweries, and/or retailers. This case study reports on a collaborative project between a small coffee brewery and its customers in the U.S. and a small coffee roastery and its suppliers in Mexico that demonstrates how sustainable coffee supply could look like and explores under which conditions it can be realized. A research team facilitated the cooperation using a transdisciplinary research approach, including field visits and stakeholder workshops. The project (i) assessed the sustainability challenges of the current supply and value chains; (ii) developed a vision of a joint sustainable coffee supply chain; (iii) build a strategy to achieve this vision, and (iv) piloted the implementation of the strategy. We discuss the project results against the conditions for sustainable international coffee supply offered in the literature (why they were fulfilled, or not). Overall, the study suggests that small intermediary coffee businesses might have the potential to infuse sustainability across their supply chain if cooperating with “open cards.” The findings confirm some and add some conditions, including economic resilience through cooperation, problem recognition, transparency, trust, and solidarity across the supply chain. The study concludes with reflections on study limitations and future research needs.
... Rural business opportunity structures can build peace by lifting populations out of impoverished situations that otherwise encourage the joining of conflict or criminal actors. Consumer goods and agriculture are also business-positive sectors for peace, including the role of coffee as a potential peacebuilding crop (Kolk, 2013;Kolk & Lenfant, 2016;Tobias & Boudreaux, 2011). Business-peace literature tends to be supportive of these typically incremental and tangential efforts by business to address root drivers of conflict (Ballentine & Haufler, 2009;Wenger & Mockli, 2003), but little systemic analysis of how such projects truly influence interactions within conflict communities has been done. ...
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Despite emerging study of business initiatives that attempt to support local peace and development, we still have significant knowledge gaps on their effectiveness and efficiency. This article builds theory on business engagements for peace through exploration of the Footprints for Peace (FOP) peacebuilding project by the Federación Nacional de Cafeteros de Colombia (FNC). FOP was a business-peace initiative that attempted to improve the lives of vulnerable populations in conflict-affected regions. Through 70 stakeholder interviews, we show how FOP operationalized local peace and development in four conflict-affected departments of Colombia, and examine FNC’s motivations for and effectiveness of its peacebuilding activities. Our main finding is that FOP’s success supported several existing theories on business engagement in peace both in terms of peacebuilding by business and for local economic and societal development, providing evidence in support of development–business collaborations and local peacebuilding by business under certain targeted circumstances. We relate these findings to existing literature, highlighting where existing business-peace theory is supported, where FOP challenged assumptions, and where it illuminated new research gaps. These findings serve to take business-peace theory forward and improve our understandings of what can constitute success for business-peace initiatives in Colombia and possibly other conflict-affected regions.
... Research on the effectiveness of the arrangements covers various attributes. For example, Reinecke et al. (2012) and Kolk (2013) stress the multiplicity and plurality of the market of standards, and the need for more complementarity between the many coffee standards to advance the market from niche to mainstream. A second category of studies, particularly on palm oil certification, stresses the creation of democratic legitimacy as a condition for an effective arrangement (i.e. ...
... The United Nations Statistical Division [49] for example, reported coffee sales to amount to 19 billion US$ in 2017 but there have been significant imbalances in the financial flows between producing and importing countries since early 2000s with only a small percentage of the purchase price for green coffee remaining in producing countries [50,51]. Even where coffee is sold via sustainability arrangements and certification (which constitutes about 25% of total coffee traded globally according to Lernoud et al. [52]), this often does not improve smallholder farmers' livelihoods [53], but rather benefits roasters or retailers [54][55][56]. ...
Article
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The purpose of this paper is to investigate the Solow-Swan's proposition that poorer countries grow faster than richer countries causing declining income disparities across countries. The role of coffee trade in income convergence is also analysed to enrich our understanding of whether traditional cash export crops, like coffee, contribute significantly to income convergence. We found that, GDP per capita was growing faster amongst coffee producers than coffee re-exporters, supporting the Solow-Swan's model. However, coffee export values and shares decreased with convergence for green coffee producers while increasing among re-exporters, implying unequal distribution of benefits along the global coffee value chain.
... The majority of the efforts to assess collaborations' worth to beneficiaries and society-this type of assessment is marginal within these literatures-centers on single-case studies. These efforts use theory-based evaluation (Weiss 1997;Judge and Bauld 2001) or logical frameworks (Funnell 1997) and the constructs they offer: inputs, outputs, outcomes, and impacts (Austin and Seitanidi 2014;Kolk and Lenfant 2013;Kolk 2013;McDonald and Young 2012). Management scholars cast the problem in terms of value created by the partnership. ...
Article
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The intensification of cross-sector collaboration phenomena has occurred in multiple fields of action. Organizations in the private, public, and social sectors are working together to tackle society’s most wicked problems. Some success has resulted in a generalized belief that cross-sector collaborations represent the new paradigm to manage complex problems. Yet, important knowledge gaps remain about how cross-sector alliances generate value for society, particularly to its beneficiaries. This paper answers the question: How cross-sector collaborations lead to systemic change? It uses a qualitative embedded case study design. I use two general cases of alliance-based interventions in the developing country Colombia. Embedded cases within each general case identify evidence of collective action capacity of the beneficiaries. Findings identify and explain alliances’ contributions to beneficiaries’ capacity building: brokering trust and creating spaces where beneficiaries develop an emergent collective action capacity. Alliances also enable beneficiaries to enact that capacity by building bridges, circulating capitals, and buffering relationships to protect people’s initiatives. Alliances and empowered collectives of beneficiaries produce systemic change using five mechanisms: brokering trust, creating spaces, building bridges, circulating capitals, and buffering relationships. Beneficiaries increased capacity for collective action is an outcome that becomes an alliance input, leading overtime to further benefits involving systemic change.
... Global imports of coffee certified to a sustainability standard have steadily increased over the past decade. Several large companies have committed to sourcing sustainably produced coffee (Kolk 2012(Kolk , 2013. The three largest coffee roasters purchased 5-7% of their coffee as sustainably certified or verified and aimed to increase the share to 20-30% by 2015 (Panhuysen and van Reenen 2012). ...
Article
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Coffee is generally grown in areas derived from forest, and both its expansion and management cause biodiversity loss. Sustainability standards in coffee are well established but have been criticized while social and environmental impact is elusive. This paper assesses the issue-attention cycle of coffee production in India and Nicaragua, including producer concerns and responses over time to concerns (sustainability standards, public regulations and development projects). Systematic comparison of the socioeconomic, environmental and policy context in both countries is then used to explore potential effects of sustainability standards. Results show limits, in local context, to relevance of global certification approaches: in both countries due to naturally high levels of biodiversity within coffee production systems global standards are easily met. They do not provide recognition for the swing potential (difference between best and worst) and do not raise the bar of environmental outcomes though nationally biodiversity declines. Nicaraguan regulations have focused on the socioeconomic development of the coffee sector via strengthening producer organizations, while India prioritized environmental and biodiversity conservation. In India, externally driven sustainability standards partially replace the existing producer–buyer relationship while in Nicaragua standards are desired by producer organizations. The temporal comparison shows that recently local stakeholders harness improvements through their unique local value propositions: the ‘small producer’ symbol in Nicaragua and certification of geographic origin in India. Nicaragua builds on the strength of its smallholder sector while India builds on its strength of being home to a global biodiversity hotspot.
... Furthermore, while over 60% of world coffee production is sold from non-verified or non-certified sources (Levy et al., 2015), a disproportionate level of research has been given to understanding formal fair trade and organic certification within the coffee industry (Lyon and Moberg, 2010;Reinecke et al., 2012;Tallontire and Nelson, 2013). This has led to a shortage of evidence concerning the route towards a more sustainable global coffee value chain outside of the certified coffee market (Kolk, 2013). This is a problem for three reasons. ...
Article
This article explores the sustainability initiatives undertaken in a non-certified market involving an indigenous Southern firm and smallholder coffee farmers in Uganda. In response to recent calls, we take a performative approach to sustainability and employ an agencing lens to ask the question: how are sustainable coffee farmers constituted in concrete situations, and what role do they play in co-constructing sustainability? The ethnographic study undertaken reveals the proactive and interactive participation of farmers in co-constructing sustainability. Also unveiled, are the continuous and iteratively emergent agencing processes involving firms, farmers, and market devices, which collectively create variably-agenced sustainable farmers who perform diverse versions of sustainability.
... As I have explained, the CSR policies of coffee companies are not always environmental in nature. In fact, many corporations focused on workers' pay and child labor as the primary issues of concern (Kolk, 2011;Talbot, 2004). Environmental CSR, or "Corporate Ecological Responsibility" focuses on "mitigating a firm's impact on the natural environment" (Bansal & Roth, 2000). ...
Article
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Abstract Climate change is making a profound impact on agricultural production across the globe. Coffee (especially the Arabica variety) is one of the most severely affected crops. Adaptive measures are therefore needed to ensure the industry’s survival. Although large coffee companies have a long history of environmental action, less is known about their strategies and attitudes related to climate adaptation. This paper attempts understand how global coffee companies are addressing climate change adaptation as part of corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies and what barriers may exist to prevent future scale-up. To answer this question, I analyzed overall global adaptation needs and the specific needs of the coffee industry, which revealed serious financial, capacity-related, and principle-based challenges. To better understand how the industry may view climate adaptation, I reviewed CSR theoretical literature and the history of CSR within the coffee industry. Through this analysis, I determined the promotion of climate adaptation in the coffee industry can best be explained by the “Creating shared value” (CSV) framework. Using the CSV framework and an understanding of global adaptation challenges, I reviewed the CSR strategies of five major coffee companies as well as supporting literature and industry information. I find that all five companies have expansive CSR programs, yet none seriously undertake climate adaptation efforts and/or make them public. I suggest several reasons for this absence, including competing CSR priorities, lack of awareness, competition, lack of leadership, the controversial nature of climate change, and the overemphasis of certification. I end the paper with a call for more collaboration and research around the adaptation issue for the coffee industry.
... However, the effects of sustainability standards and group certification on participating households and RPOs ('added value') are still obscure. Since financial data are hard to collect, empirical studies do not usually consider the costs of certification, and often lack control groups, while the majority of existing studies focus on the Fairtrade label (Kolk, 2013). There is a lack of detailed quantitative evidence of the 'net benefit' for smallholder producers, especially for newer initiatives such as UTZ Certified. ...
Article
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Voluntary sustainability standards, aimed at improving the environmental, social and economic aspects of agricultural production and trade, are becoming increasingly common. The coffee sector is a prime example, where sustainability certification could improve livelihoods for poor smallholders. However, as individual production volumes are low, smallholder farmers need to cooperate in certification as a group, which makes impact assessment more complicated. Previous empirical studies, reporting premia of up to 30%, have neglected the costs associated with group certification. We explore the issue using an agent-based simulation of coffee producer organisations in Uganda, including the certification-related costs for farmers. Our results suggest that certification can have a small positive impact on participating households. But the added value of certification is substantially lower than the price premium, because of certification costs. Increasing both the membership of the producer groups and their deliveries of certified coffee are necessary to improve the rewards of certification.
... Also, the question whether fair trade should be mainstreamed or not has been strongly debated (Fridell, 2006;Jaffee, 2012;Murray et al., 2006;Raynolds, 2009). In addition, as the criteria underlying different labels can vary greatly, the lack of transparency between different labels has been criticised (Kolk, 2013;Raynolds et al., 2007). When combining this narrow interpretation of fair trade with the second axis, namely interventionist (government dominated) versus neoliberal (market dominated) approaches, different ways to achieve the 'fairtrade' objective can be discerned. ...
Chapter
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Since the Lisbon Treaty (2009), promoting ‘free and fair trade’ has explicitly become one of the objectives of the European Union’s (EU) relations with the wider world (TEU art 3.5). In addition, the latest trade strategy of the EU, ‘Trade for All’ (2015), emphasises the need for a value-based trade policy. It refers to the promotion of sustainable development, human rights and good governance through trade and suggests several instruments to achieve this objective, including ‘fair and ethical trading schemes’.However, it remains rather unclear what the EU’s position concerning fair trade exactly is. The academic literature on the EU’s common commercial policy rarely refers to fair trade policies. An important obstacle for clearly understanding what the EU’s approach to this topic would be is the ambiguous meaning of the concept ‘Fair Trade’. Since there are divergent interpretations of Fair Trade, ranging from labelling of products, over support to the social movement, to the reform of the trading system, and even trade defence instruments, there is no established answer to that question. The aim of this chapter is twofold. First, on a conceptual level, a framework is developed to unravel the diverse meanings of ‘Fair Trade’ and to structure the debate. Second, from an empirical point of view, this framework is used to interpret the EU’s position and how it has evolved over time.
... Although VSSs are promoted as means to improve smallholder farmer livelihoods through higher prices and higher household incomes (Meemken, 2020), a critique remains that standards primarily benefit well-off producers, ignoring the weakest, marginalized smallholders and failing to ensure that price premiums reaches them (COSA, 2013;Minten et al., 2018). Trade-offs between socio-economic and environmental outcomes exist (Vanderhaegen et al., 2018) and concern about the 'mainstreaming' of certification is widespread (Kolk, 2013;Lernoud et al., 2017;Raynolds, 2009;Sexsmith & Potts, 2009). Comparing competing VSSs, Dietz et al., (2018) found that, overall, more stringent VSSs achieved smaller market share in the coffee sector than in comparable sectors, as the growth of weaker, industry-/company-led VSSs constrained the rise of the more stringent VSSs. ...
Article
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The coffee sector is facing several sustainability challenges. We ask whether addressing these is transforming the entire coffee sector or rather leading to market differentiation. Drawing on stakeholder theory and global value chain analysis, we analyse how the coffee sector approaches sustainability by examining the sustainability efforts of a random sample of 513 companies. We also identify the factors shaping the adoption of sustainability strategies. A third of companies report no commitment to sustainability, whereas another third report vague commitment. The final third of companies report tangible commitments to sustainability. Company characteristics and stakeholders affect the scope and type of sustainability strategy chosen. Large, risk‐aware companies tend to conduct ‘hands‐on’ governance, adopting internal sustainability practices along their value chain. Small, consumer‐facing companies and producers rely on ‘hands‐off’ governance, adopting external voluntary sustainability standards. Several sustainability issues remain underaddressed by most companies, including climate change and deforestation. We found indications of potential greenwashing by some companies. Addressing sustainability is not yet fully mainstreamed in the sector, though ambitious commitments by sustainability leaders and large actors signal increasing importance of sustainability as part of corporate social responsibility efforts. We observe market differentiation through sustainability with progressive companies adopting sustainability strategies that align with their stakeholders, depending on value chain characteristics. Our results indicate a notable reliance on internal sustainability practices. There is a need for common coffee sustainability indicators relevant for all actors along the value chain, which are consistent with the Sustainable Development Goals, and a transparent, mandatory reporting framework.
... The United Nations Statistical Division [49] for example, reported coffee sales to amount to 19 billion US$ in 2017 but there have been significant imbalances in the financial flows between producing and importing countries since early 2000s with only a small percentage of the purchase price for green coffee remaining in producing countries [50,51]. Even where coffee is sold via sustainability arrangements and certification (which constitutes about 25% of total coffee traded globally according to Lernoud et al. [52]), this often does not improve smallholder farmers' livelihoods [53], but rather benefits roasters or retailers [54][55][56]. ...
... With an increasing demand for coffee production, the coffee plant is currently cultivated in more than 80 countries all over the world, and the coffee industry greatly shapes the agricultural economies of major coffee producing countries (Adane and Bewket, 2021;ICO, 2021;Magrach and Ghazoul, 2015;Vega et al., 2003). While the western countries, mostly in America and Europe, still represent the dominant coffee market (accounting for approximately 20% and 30% of world consumption, respectively), new markets are rapidly emerging (Kolk, 2013). For example, in China, particularly in its urban areas, coffee consumption has been constantly increasing by 20% every year, and this trend has been predicted to continue due to an increasing appreciation of coffee among the Chinese people (Wen et al., 2018). ...
Article
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Yunnan Province is the major coffee cultivation region in China, and coffee beans produced in Yunnan account for approximately 99% of the total national coffee production. So far, the sensory properties of Yunnan coffee have not been subjected to descriptive analysis. Here, we selected 25 representative coffee bean samples that are produced in different cultivation areas of Yunnan and with different degrees of roasting. A total of 57 sensory descriptors have been associated with the samples, and a sensory wheel that summarizes the sensory characteristics was developed. In addition, to identify the major attributes associated with Yunnan coffee, principal component analysis was performed, and we also explored how the bean origin and degree of roasting are related to the overall sensory features of Yunnan coffee. Our results show that the growing area is an affecting factor on the aspects of “spices”, “roasted”, “sweet” and “chemical/stale”, whereas “mouthfeel” and “roasted”, and “sour/acid” levels can be influenced by the degree of roasting. The present sensory characterization may provide valuable information for future improvements of Yunnan’s coffee agriculture.
... The most established primary coffee ecolabelling initiatives in the markets are Fairtrade and Organic labelling (Stellmacher and Grote, 2011;Gru ere, 2014). Other various thirdÀparty sustainable certification schemes such as Rainforest Alliance, Carbon footprint, 4C, and COOL (Pierrot et al., 2011;Dragusanu et al., 2014) are also designed to support producers gain a competitive advantage in the market (Giovaannucci and Ponte, 2005;Van Loo et al., 2010;Hjelmar, 2011;Teisl et al., 2011;Blackman and Rivera, 2011;Reinecke et al., 2012;Kolk, 2013;Dragusanu et al., 2014). However, the positive impacts of ecolabelling on environment can be challenged by perception of the consumers regarding the number of ecolabelling in the market and reliability of the signs on the labels. ...
Article
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Primary studies estimate consumers' willingness to pay for a single or a couple of coffee ecolabelling in a single country and occasionally across countries. The estimates are not beyond explaining consumers' willingness to pay for a specific attribute in that particular study area. This creates uncertainty in disentangling heterogeneity in the effect size within the same country and across countries which can be associated with publication bias and/or other factors. We apply a meta−analysis that combines individual willingness to pay (n = 97) from 22 primary studies to estimate average effect size for each attribute and explore factors that explain heterogeneity in the effect size in the last 15 years. Our descriptive analysis results designate that consumers' willingness to pay for a pound of Organic, Country of Origin Labeling, and Fairtrade coffee is positive and significant. The meta−model results show that Organic attribute is the most important factor that affects willingness to pay for eco−coffee. Compared to other stated preference methods, choice experiment has the potential to reduce hypothetical bias and precisely estimate the effect size. The difference in the effect size across regions indicates consumers' preference heterogeneity for coffee ecolabelling. In general, despite the debate that the existence of multiple ecolabelling in the market may cause a decline in consumers' trust and willingness to pay overtime, our study concludes that consumers’ purchase behavior in selected countries is pro−eco−coffee.
... • Support for growers. In the 21st century, in order to respond to the challenges facing the coffee market, producers should teach small growers how to operate in a more effective way and how to use sustainable crop methods, thus increasing their productivity over a longer period of time [57][58][59]. ...
Article
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Producers and retailers are the driving force behind the adoption of the idea of sustainability. It has been found that while preparing their product range offer, many still pay attention to the same set of criteria: size of the customers' earnings, how often they shop, and how much they buy when shopping. In general, sustainable values applied by consumers in their purchasing decisions are rarely taken into account in consumer segmentation. The aim of this study is to recognize if values such as environmental protection, producers' ethical behavior, fair trade or maximizing the utility function of consumption are important factors in the purchasing process of coffee and if they can be used as segmentation variables. The discussed findings come from a standardized online survey conducted on a sample of 800 Polish coffee consumers in July 2018. The obtained results are discussed by employing multi-dimensional analyses, such as exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and cluster analysis (CA). In consequence, six segments of coffee consumers are identified and described: "responsible, aspiring to be connoisseurs", "loyal coffee enthusiasts", "pragmatic users", "coffee laypersons", "sophisticated connoisseurs", and "consumerists, connoisseurs, but not at any price". Among the identified segments, the most often indicated sustainable consumption values refer to "responsible, aspiring to be connoisseurs", and the least often to "consumerists, connoisseurs, but not at any price". The conclusions may be used by manufacturing and trade enterprises operating in the coffee market to respond to the identified needs and expectations of consumers.
... Also, the question whether fair trade should be mainstreamed or not has been strongly debated (Fridell, 2006;Murray et al., 2006;Raynolds, 2009). In addition, as the criteria underlying different labels can vary greatly, the lack of transparency between different labels has been criticised (Kolk, 2013;Raynolds et al., 2007). When combining this narrow interpretation of fair trade with the second axis, namely interventionist (government dominated) versus neoliberal (market dominated) approaches, different ways to achieve the 'fairtrade' objective can be discerned. ...
Book
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The main question addressed in this dissertation is whether trade arrangements, and especially EU bilateral trade agreements, that were developed to promote labour rights can improve labour conditions in third countries. We focused extensively on the trade and sustainable development chapters and the civil society mechanisms established through these chapters. Through a case study of the EU-Central American Association Agreement, as well as labour conditions in the Costa Rican pineapple sector, we have connected the bottom of the supply chain (the workers in pineapple plantations) to an important importer of fresh Costa Rican pineapples, being the EU. In this context, we have paid particular attention to the existence and functioning of trade unions, as well as their participation to EU trade arrangements, as they can enable better working conditions by representing workers through social dialogue. We found that civil society mechanisms in the trade agreement have contributed to the agency, the ability to act and choose, of trade unions. Yet, this advancement is negated by the incapacity of the instrument to deal with the anti-union context in Costa Rica. In other words, for EU trade arrangements to be more effective in terms of improving labour conditions in third countries, it has to address both the agency of trade unions as well as the institutional context in which they operate, as the latter influences the ability to transform agency into action.
... The food industry also presents a high social responsibility as their actions can generate collective problems of society. This sector is also the most related to issues in Labor Conditions and Human Rights (Kolk, 2013;Gaviglio et al., 2016). In an SSC view, the control in the food sector, must be efficient, requiring the development of tools, which ensure the control of suppliers in social aspects ( Li et al., 2014a;Grimm et al., 2013). ...
Article
The social dimension of sustainability in supply chains has grown in importance in both academic and industrial communities. This article aims to understand how social dimension has been incorporated in supply chain management research in the past years and what research gaps still exist. For this purpose, a systematic literature review is performed where 621 articles are analysed considering a set of categories that include: research methodology; social dimension; social analysis focus; supply chain entities; traceability and transparency; uncertainty and risk; industrial activity sector. A cross-analysis between categories is presented, revealing that social sustainability concerns have been increasingly addressed along the years, but further research still needs to be performed to achieve more inclusive social supply chains. N-Vivo Software is used to perform the content analysis. The main research gaps and trends regarding social concerns in supply chains are identified and systematised into a framework that can be used to integrate social aspects in supply chains. Based on the latter, a research agenda is defined targeting concerned researchers and practitioners to attain the sustainable supply chains. Link for free access: https://authors.elsevier.com/a/1ZSkg_LqUdMISK
... As a result, in some commodity groups, Fairtrade standards have long been co-existing with CSR standards that are explicitly oriented towards larger producers and broader sustainability criteria, to which producers have to adhere. Examples include Utz Certified, Rainforest Alliance (now merged into one standard organization) and the Ethical Tea Partnership (Kolk, 2013). More recently, however, Fairtrade has also started to include verification and certification of larger production facilities for other commodities such as cocoa and tea and has revised its standards to also include broader sustainability requirements beyond only developmental ones. ...
Article
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Full text available at https://doi.org/10.1108/MBR-08-2019-0083 Purpose This paper aims to examine the multiplicity of corporate social responsibility (CSR) standards, explaining its nature, dynamics and implications for multinational enterprises (MNEs) and international business (IB), especially in the context of CSR and global value chain (GVC) governance. Design/methodology/approach This paper leverages insights from the literature in political science, policy, regulation, governance and IB; from the own earlier work; and from an inventory of CSR standards across a range of sectors and products. Findings This analysis’ more nuanced approach to CSR standard multiplicity helps distinguish the different categories of standards; uncovers the existence of different types of standard multiplicity; and highlights complex trends in their evolution over time, discussing implications for the various firms targeted by, or involved in, these initiatives, and for CSR and GVC governance research. Research limitations/implications This paper opens many avenues for future research on CSR multiplicity and its consequences; on lead firms governing GVCs from an IB perspective; and on institutional and market complexity. Practical implications By providing overviews and classifications, this paper helps clarify CSR standards as “new regulators” and “instruments” for actors in business, society and government. Originality/value This paper contributes by filling gaps in different existing literatures concerning standard multiplicity. It also specifically adds a new perspective to the IB literature, which thus far has not fully incorporated the complexity and dynamics of CSR standard multiplicity in examining GVCs and MNE strategy and policy.
... As a result, in some commodity groups, Fairtrade standards have long been co-existing with CSR standards that are explicitly oriented towards larger producers and broader sustainability criteria, to which producers have to adhere. Examples include Utz Certified, Rainforest Alliance (now merged into one standard organization) and the Ethical Tea Partnership (Kolk, 2013). More recently, however, Fairtrade has also started to include verification and certification of larger production facilities for other commodities such as cocoa and tea and has revised its standards to also include broader sustainability requirements beyond only developmental ones. ...
Article
This article conducts a population-level analysis of transnational private governance organizations (TPGOs) that develop standards for sustainable commodity production in the Global South. Our point of departure is the observation that despite the rapid growth in the number of TPGOs active in developing countries the extant scholarship remains focused on a small set of well-studied programs. To address this imbalance, this article brings much needed empirical breadth to current debates on the proliferation, inclusivity, and distributional consequences of transnational sustainability governance. Analyzing 47 TPGOs and their operations in 12 export-oriented commodity sectors and the 10 largest developing country producers of these commodities, our explorations reveal signs of a worrying “bigger picture”. The highly unequal geographic and sectoral distribution of TPGOs, the lack of inclusion of producers in their central decision-making bodies, and the prevalence of problematic cost sharing arrangements limit the potential of this mode of governance to contribute to sustainable commodity production in developing countries.
... In Brazil, there are research opportunities focused on the domestic market for Fairtrade certified coffee. Some factors contribute to this, such as: i) saturation of the external market for Fairtrade certified coffee (CLAAR; HAIGHT, 2015;POTTS et al., 2014); ii) increase in the production of certified coffee in Brazil (ALMEIDA; ZYLBERSZTAJN, 2017) and increase in the consumption of specialty coffee in Brazil (BOAVENTURA et al., 2018;EUROMONITOR INTERNATIONAL, 2017;GUIMARÃES et al, 2018;MORYA, 2020;SPERS et al., 2016;GIORDANO;VITA, 2016); iii) relative lack of public information on the specialty coffee market in Brazil (GUIMARÃES et al., 2018) and on Brazilian Fairtrade certified organizations (BOSSLE et al, 2017); iv) representative production of Fairtrade certified coffee in Brazil (FAIRTRADE INTERNATIONAL, 2019a, 2019b; v) Brazilian potential to produce Fairtrade certified coffee (FAIRTRADE INTERNATIONAL, 2012, 2013, 2019b. ...
Article
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This article aims to characterize the actions aimed at the Brazilian Fairtrade certified coffee market. It achieves this objective by describing the strategies aimed at the internal market of the stakeholders of Fairtrade certified coffee in Brazil. This is done in a scenario where there is: i) insufficient research that addresses the Brazilian Fairtrade coffee market; ii) increased consumption of specialty coffees in Brazil; iii) saturation of the external market for certified Fairtrade coffee. To this end, the article was designed by applying interviews and questionnaires to the main stakeholders of Fairtrade certified coffee in Brazil. The lack of collective strategies for publicizing Fairtrade coffee in Brazil is the main obstacle to the consumption of the product in the domestic market.
... This article focuses on analysing one possible contributing factor: the competition between Voluntary Sustainability Standards. There has been considerable debate on whether the competition between certification schemes for buyer and producer uptake in a 'standards market' (Fransen 2011, Reinecke et al. 2012) would lead to a race to the bottom or to the top in terms of standard setting (Bernstein and Cashore 2007, Raynolds 2009, Kolk 2013, Fransen and Conzelmann 2015. Less attention has been paid to what such competition means for the implementation of the set standards on the ground. ...
Article
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Voluntary Sustainability Standards have become a popular private governance framework for more sustainable agri-food value chains. However, recent mainstreaming efforts have increased competition between standards and driven down price premiums. This study employs a dataset of 659 Honduran coffee producers to examine whether the most widely used standards in the coffee sector (4C, Fairtrade, Fairtrade/organic, UTZ Certified and Rainforest Alliance) represent effective solutions for improving the social, environmental and economic sustainability practices of smallholder farmers under such conditions. It presents 54 farm-level indicators, compared across five standard systems, and links field results to a discussion of the strategies and governance prospects of voluntary standards. We find that no scheme has managed to grow substantially while maintaining strong additionality: commercially successful standards show little impact, while stricter schemes create high entry barriers and unresolved opportunity costs. Successful mainstreaming would require better cost coverage of sustainability improvements by value chain actors .
... Standar dan sertifikasi berkelanjutan melalui praktik pertanian yang baik, diharapkan dapat berkontribusi dalam meningkatkan produksi dan produktivitas kopi. Ketiga, permintaan kopi bersertifikat di pasar internasional cenderung meningkat karena perusahaan-perusahaan multinasional (seperti Nestlé, Philip Morris/Kraft, dan Sara Lee) sebagai pembeli kopi yang signifikan di pasar dunia, semakin menuntut petani kopi agar berpartisipasi dalam standar dan sertifikasi (Kolk, 2013). Dibantu oleh berbagai lembaga swadaya masyarakat (LSM), perusahaan-perusahaan tersebut gencar berkampanye agar petani kopi memenuhi permintaan mereka (KPMG Sustainability, 2013;Loconto & Dankers, 2014;Glasbergen, 2018). ...
Article
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em>Sustainable standards and certification can encourage coffee farmers to adopt good agricultural practices (GAP), achieving coffee production that is economically, socially and environmentally sustainable. The Common Code for Coffee Community (4C) is a standard and certification scheme currently exists in Robusta coffee production center in Lampung Province. However, sustainable standard and certification become less relevant without farmers’ participation. Farmers’ participation in standards and certification has been relatively low and studies on the issue are relatively rare. This study aims to analyze the determinants of farmer’s participation in 4C Standards and Certification. The study was conducted in West Lampung and Tanggamus Ragency, Lampung Province from February to May 2019. The total number of respondents was 120 people (4C certified farmers and non-certified farmers) surveyed with a systematic-random-sampling method. Data was analyzed using heckprobit regression. The results showed that farmer participation in 4C was determined by the selling price of coffee, farmers’ side job, farmers' preference to replace coffee with other commodities, and the farmers’ group activity. The results indicated that 4C and coffee stakeholders at national scale need to consider policies on how to improve coffee price, optimizing the farmer organizations, and the added-value of coffee production.</em
... This suggests that membership and reach of the meta-governors in their respective issue-fields is inversely related with stringency on sustainability standards. This would be in line with empirical transnational governance research where higher stringency tends to be associated with rather limited uptake (Kalfagianni and Pattberg, 2013;Kolk, 2013). ...
Article
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This paper analyses the promise of private meta-governors to bring more cohesion into specific issue fields. A framework is presented with potential meta-governance mechanisms of change. These are confronted with the practices of three governance arrangements that have the ambition to become a key actor for the advancement of sustainable production in a global value chain: the sustainable fisheries partnership, the Common Code for Coffee Community Association and the World Cocoa Foundation. Although the case studies demonstrate that the mechanisms for change are used in different ways and to varying degrees, the private uptake of meta-governance mechanisms for change particularly relates to networking and capacity building. These are mostly geared towards process management strategies, activating actors and resources, and arranging and facilitating interactions amongst stakeholders. Meta-governors can be strengthened in their efforts to frame the global sustainability discourse and mainstreaming of sustainability goals.
... In the coffee sector, complexities have been noted for, e.g. multinational retailers that need large quantities from a variety of (intermediary) sources, both conventional and certified sustainable coffee types, which must be kept separate (Kolk, 2013). Opacity due to intermediaries has also been a long-standing issue in smallholder cocoa production for global exports and therefore excludes the possibility of full traceability of cocoa origins for some chocolate products by brands and retailers that endorse labour and environmental standards; according to Fairtrade (2020), this applies to tea, sugar and fruit juices as well. ...
Article
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Purpose-Amidst burgeoning attention for global value chains (GVCs) in international business (IB), this paper aims to identify a clear "missing link" in this literature and discusses implications for research and corporate social responsibility (CSR) policy-making and implementation. Design/methodology/approach-The paper combines an overview of relevant literature from different (sub)disciplinary fields, with insights from practitioner and expert interviews and secondary data. Findings-Because IB GVC research stems from a focus on lead firms and their producing suppliers, it lacks attention for intermediary actors that may significantly impact the organization of production in general, and firms' CSR commitments in particular. Import intermediaries are often "hidden" in GVCs. This paper indicates the emergence of GVC parallelism with "frontstage" chains managed by lead firms and increasingly exposed to public scrutiny following calls for transparency and CSR, and "backstage" ones in which buyers and intermediaries operate more opaquely. Practical implications-This study points at salient yet little known practices and actors that influence the organization of production and the implementation of CSR policies in various ways, and therefore offers ground for reflection on the design of proper supply chain and CSR policies. Originality/value—This study exposes a hitherto neglected category of actors in GVCs and broader IB research and discusses implications, relevance and areas for further investigation. An illustrative example explicates the importance of carefully considering this “missing link”. The article emphasises the need for further study into ways in which both lead firms and intermediaries deal with contradicting demands of implementing CSR policies and offering competitive prices with short lead times.
... In 2012, 40% of global coffee (3.3 million metric tons) was produced in compliance with a voluntary sustainability standard, of which 40% was produced in Brazil and 15% in Vietnam (Potts et al., 2014). With smallholders supplying 70% of the world's coffee (Kolk, 2011), sustainability certification schemes have focused largely on helping coffee farmers maintain their high yield while reducing production costs and environmental degradation, by educating them about optimal fertiliser, energy and water inputs. Additionally, training coffee farmers techniques such as integrated crop management and soil conservation helps them increase soil fertility to reduce the dependence on fertilisers and pesticides, further reducing the inputs required to produce optimal crop quality and quantity. ...
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Over 9.5 billion kg of coffee is produced annually and demand is expected to triple by 2050. Hence, the identification and quantification of the greenhouse gas emission footprint of coffee is essential if it is to become a more sustainable crop. We have produced a detailed life cycle assessment of the carbon equivalent footprint of coffee produced in Brazil and Vietnam and exported to the United Kingdom. The average carbon footprint of Arabica coffee from both countries was calculated as 15.33 (±0.72) kg of carbon dioxide equivalent per 1 kg of green coffee (kg CO2e kg−1 ) for conventional coffee production and 3.51 (±0.13) kg CO2e kg−1 for sustainable coffee production. The 77% reduction in carbon footprint for sustainable coffee production in comparison to conventional production was due to exportation of coffee beans via cargo ship rather than freight flight and the reduction of agrochemical inputs. Based on our results, further reductions could be made through optimal use of agrochemicals; reduced packaging; more efficient water heating; renewable energy use; roasting beans before exportation; and carbon offsetting. Applying these recommendations correctly through certification schemes could mitigate other environmental impacts of coffee cultivation.
... Suki (2016) concludes that knowledge on green brands forms the most significant determinant for purchase intentions of green products. However, several studies argue that eco-labelled products remain in niche markets (Martinez-de-Ibarreta and Valor, 2017;Kolk, 2013;Chekima et al., 2016). This raises the question of the reach of product sustainability information. ...
Article
Sustainable consumption is a crucial contributor to sustainable development. Often, environmental policy approaches to promote sustainable consumption rely on increasing the awareness of consumers through information provision. Hence, it is important to know what kind of people the sustainability information is likely to reach, and what kind of people would need to be reached by other means in order to green their consumption. We advance the question of the characteristics of consumers who look for information about sustainability when making grocery purchasing choices. We focus on value-based buying behaviour of Millennials, drawing from consumer surveys carried out in Finland, Hong Kong and Spain. The results show that values differ between the studied nationalities, but when modelling how values affect the pro-responsibility behaviour the effect of nationality vanishes. Also, high perception of one's own sustainability related behaviour seems to enable altruistic, self-directed people to act on environmental concern. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment
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Increased interest in ethical consumption has promoted the creation of incentives for product differentiation, which has been adopted by the market in terms of a variety of labels and certificates to describe a whole collection of product attributes related to health, social, or environmental sustainability. In this chapter, we describe and compare six coffee certifications in terms of their certification processes, governance mechanisms, and market penetration. Our comparison shows that leading certifications reassert their trustworthiness by emphasizing transparency, legitimacy, and accountability of their practices and governance processes. To demonstrate transparency, it is common that certification authorities openly publicize their standards and principles to demonstrate the transparency. To show legitimacy, they get accreditations from reputable national or international organization. Unfortunately, most of this information is not always at the reach of final consumers.
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Cocoa multinationals have committed themselves to source and use close to 100 percent sustainable certified cocoa beans, aiming to improve farmers' livelihoods. As their current sourcing strategy is aimed mainly at environmental sustainability, they need a different one. This study seeks to amend this by providing an inclusive sourcing indicator, representing the integral costs of certified cocoa beans, to leverage values to impact farmers business model in high value-adding supply chains. Because this indicator is explorative indicator the applicability has been explored in four cases in Ghana and the Ivory Coast from the literature. This study's findings call for a review of conventional sourcing models and certification schemes to anticipate the mainstreaming of sustainable sourcing and the improvement of farmers' livelihoods.
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Commercial and academic communities use private rules to regulate everything from labor conditions to biological weapons. This self- governance is vital in the twenty- first century, when private science and technology networks cross so many borders that traditional regulation and treaty solutions are oft en impractical. Self- Governance in Science analyzes the history of private regulation, identifies the specific market factors that make private standards stable and enforceable, explains how governments can encourage responsible selfregulation, and asks when private power might be legitimate. Unlike previous books that stress sociology or political science perspectives, Maurer emphasizes the economic roots of private power to deliver a coherent and comprehensive account of recent scholarship. Individual chapters present a detailed history of past self- government initiatives, describe the economics and politics of private power, and extract detailed lessons for law, legitimacy theory, and public policy.
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This conceptual article explores the notion of ‘values added’ in the emerging context of speciality coffee. Previous studies have not considered the impact of shared values across the sector, through the supply chain to coffee shops. It is proposed that shared values contribute to differentiation in speciality coffee, resulting in distinctive coffee products and coffee shop experiences. ‘Values added’ are explored through the Aboriginal meaning system of songlines. This represents a playful approach to contextual theorizing, providing a new way of identifying and understanding the transfer of shared values across the sector. Four categories of shared values are identified relating to: ‘ecology’, ‘journey’, ‘integration’ and ‘attention to detail’, which are used to inform a values-added conceptual framework. Finally, the study makes recommendations for further research within the context of speciality coffee, emphasizing the importance using and aligning theory to enhance the understanding of differentiation.
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To better understand consumers' fair trade purchasing intentions, this study proposed an extended model of the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) in which a new determinant, cosmopolitanism, was added to reflect consumers' global orientation and perception of fair trade coffee in the context of globalization. In addition, this study employed the construct of “purchase implementation intention” to address the gap between stated intention and actual behavior. To test the study's hypotheses, a random survey was administered to 400 participants in Seoul, South Korea, a key emerging market for fair trade coffee consumption. The data were analyzed using a hierarchical regression method. Our findings suggest that (i) attitudes toward purchasing fair trade coffee, subjective norms, and cosmopolitanism were significant factors in predicting purchase implementation intentions with regard to fair trade coffee; (ii) perceived behavioral control was not statistically significant; and (iii) cosmopolitanism had a partial moderating effect on purchase implementation intentions. To confirm the utility of purchase implementation intention, a choice experiment involving 145 undergraduate and graduate students was administered. The data were analyzed using logistic regression. Purchase implementation intention was shown to reflect consumers' actual choice of fair trade coffee. Theoretical and managerial implications are discussed.
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The potential of transnational private governance initiatives to constitute effective alternatives to state‐led regulation of global value chains rests on their ability to scale up and become institutionalized in a given sector. This study examines whether such institutionalization has occurred in the coffee sector, the commodity with the most widespread adoption of certified products and over 30 years’ experience of private governance, and tests hypotheses on facilitating and inhibiting conditions. It finds that while norm generation around responsible supply chain management and the organizational institutionalization of standard‐setting bodies is well advanced, the practice of internalizing social and environmental externalities through the routinized production and purchase of higher priced certified goods continues to be questioned by industry actors. Indeed, conditions that favored normative and organizational institutionalization, such as high levels of industry concentration, product differentiation, and deliberative interaction, are shown to represent barriers to the practice‐oriented institutionalization of market‐driven regulatory governance.
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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to assess the impact of smallholder supply chains on sustainable sourcing to answer the question how food and agribusiness multinationals can best include smallholders in their sourcing strategies and take social responsibility for large-scale sustainable and more equitable supply. A sustainable smallholder sourcing model with a list of critical success factors (CSFs) has been applied on two best-practise cases. In this model, business and corporate social responsibility perspectives are integrated. Design/methodology/approach The primary data of the value chain analyses of the two smallholder supply chains of a food and agribusiness multinational have been applied. Both cases were of a join research program commissioned by the multinational and a non-governmental organization using the same methods and research tools. Similarities, differences and interference between the cases have been determined and assessed in order to confirm, fine tune or adjust the CSFs. Findings Both cases could be conceptualized through the smallholder sourcing model. Most CSFs could be found in both cases, but differences were also found, which led to fine tuning of some CSFs: building of a partnership and effective producers organization, providing farm financing and the use of cross-functional teams in smallholder supplier development programs. It was also concluded that the smallholder sourcing model is applicable in different geographical areas. Research limitations/implications The findings of this study are based on just two cases. More best-practise cases are recommended in order to confirm or to adjust the developed sourcing model and the CSFs. Originality/value This paper/research fills the need in sustainable supply chain management literature to study supply chains that comply with the triple bottom line concept, rather than supply chains that are just more “green.”
Book
Cambridge Core - Governance - Selling Sustainability Short? - by Janina Grabs
Chapter
This volume analyzes the conditions that lead to different levels of effectiveness among transnational pub lie-priva te partnerships (PPPs) for sustainable development working in areas of limited statehood. Defining PPP effectiveness as furthering the attainment of international development goals such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), we use new empirical data obtained from expert interviews, documents, field research, and secondary literature to test a series of hypotheses about the relevance of various institutional design features for a partnership’s success. Our study focuses on 21 transnational PPPs (Chapters 3–5) and on 45 local-level projects carried out by four of these partnerships in Bangladesh, India, Kenya, and Uganda (Chapters 7 and 8). While we assume that institutional design matters, the question of which aspects of this design are the most significant depends on the type of partnership and the local context in which PPP projects are implemented. For the local-level projects, we adopt a comparative approach to analyze them in order to systematically assess the relevance of project-specific versus are a-specific conditions.
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Does participation in Fair Trade coffee marketing deliver added value to small-scale producers in developing countries? Is Fair Trade fair to producers as promised? The present study adopts a survey methodology designed to measure a combination of socio-economic impact indicators as well as measures particular to the Fair Trade coffee growing and marketing experience. We surveyed over 1200 small-scale coffee producers in Nicaragua, Peru, and Guatemala, of which about two-thirds participate in coffee marketing schemes sponsored by Transfair, USA. The study reports selected results related to production, marketing, material quality of life, education, health, and general wellbeing. Results show that producers participating in Transfair-supported Fair Trade cooperatives are indeed capturing more value than non-participants. This benefit transfer translates into modest but measurable improvements in quality of life, health, education, material comforts, social participation, technical and social assistance, and even sustainable agricultural practices. Consumers can have confidence that the Fair Trade scheme works. Retailers may be assured that by selling Fair Trade coffee they can defend the position that they are participating in a social change campaign.
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Consumer behaviour is key to the impact that societ y has on the environment. The actions that people take and choices they make – to consume certain products and services or to live in certain ways rather than others – all have direct and indirect impacts on the environment, as well as on personal (and collective) well-being. This is why the topic of ‘sustainable consumption’ has become a central focus for national and international policy. Why do we consume in the ways that we do? What fact ors shape and constrain our choices and actions? Why (and when) do people behave in pro-environmental or pro-social ways? And how can we encourage, motivate and facilitate more sustainable attitudes, behaviours and lifestyles? Motivating Sustainable Consumption sets out to address these questions. It reviews the literature on consumer behaviour and behavioura l change. It discusses the evidence base for different models of change. It al so highlights the dilemmas and opportunities that policy-makers face in addressing unsustainable consumption patterns and encouraging more sustainable lifestyle s. Changing behaviours – and in particular motivating more sustainable behaviours – is far from straightforward. Individual behaviours are deeply embedded in social and institutional contexts. We are guided as much by what others around us say and do, and by the ‘rules of the game’ as we are by persona l choice. We often find ourselves ‘locked in’ to unsustainable behaviours in spite of our own best intentions. In these circumstances, the rhetoric of ‘consumer s overeignty’ and ‘hands-off’ governance is inaccurate and unhelpful. Policy-make rs are not innocent bystanders in the negotiation of consumer choice. Policy interven es continually in consumer behaviour both directly (through regulation and taxes eg) and more importantly through its extensive influence over the social con text within which people act. This insight offers a far more creative vista for policy innovation than has hitherto been recognised. A concerted strategy is needed to make it easy to behave more sustainably: ensuring that incentive structures and institutional rules favour sustainable behaviour, enabling access to pro-environmental choice, engaging people in initiatives to help themselves, and exemplifying the desired changes within Government’s own policies and practices.
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This study of the impact of fair trade relies on new field data from coffee and banana co-operatives in Peru and Costa Rica, including a detailed assessment of its welfare effects by comparing FT farmers with non-FT farmers as a benchmark. Attention is focused on three major effects: (a) direct tangible impact of FT arrangements on the income, welfare, and livelihoods of rural households; (b) indirect effects of fair trade for improving credit access, capital stocks, investments, and attitudes to risk; and (c) institutional implications of fair trade for farmers' organisations and externalities for local and regional employment, bargaining, and trading conditions. Although direct effects in terms of net income remain fairly modest, important benefits are found to include capitalising farmers and strengthening their organisations.
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The State of Sustainable Coffee provides the first comprehensive overview of the market conditions facing, organic, fair trade and shade grown or eco-friendly coffees (termed 'sustainable' coffees). It outlines the volumes, trends, distribution channels, major players, and price premiums in 12 nations across Europe and Japan, as a companion to an earlier North American report. While some common parallels exist, such as the priority for consistency and quality standards, the substantial inter-market differences emphasize the need to approach each country and sometimes each distribution channel with an appreciation for its unique distinctions. Overall, the striking emergence and growth of sustainable coffees has catapulted them quickly from a small niche industry to become a significant part of the mainstream market. Their growth has consistently eclipsed the growth rate of conventional coffee for more than a decade. As a result of their strict environmental and social standards, improved governance structures, better farm management, and price premiums, these sustainability initiatives are facilitating not only rural development but also agricultural trade competitiveness for developing nations. In agriculture, it is the coffee sector that has arguably developed the most advanced experience with certified organic, fair trade, and eco-friendly products that are now shipped from more than half of the coffee exporting nations. A number of other goods ranging from commodities such as tea and sugar to meats, fruits and vegetables are following the coffee sector's innovative sustainability models. Although these sustainably produced products are not a panacea, they offer one of the few bright spots in developing country agricultural trade and provide considerable direct benefits to the more than one million coffee producing families that participate. The book was published jointly by IISD, the International Coffee Organization and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development with the support of the International Development Research Centre and the World Bank.
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Coffee is the leading agricultural sector in terms of both the number and frequent use of social and environmental certification. This fast-growing category of certified sustainable coffees has emerged from almost negligible quantities in the late 1990s to approximately 4% of global green coffee exports in 2006 making it a multi-billion dollar segment of the industry. The US and Canada account for over one quarter of global coffee imports in value. Their consumers are increasingly attentive to the social, economic, and environmental aspects of coffee production as evidenced by the significant expansion of certified coffees into both gourmet and mass market channels. This chapter covers the market development and current statistics of all the certified sustainable coffees in North America including volumes, value, premiums, and their general trends at the global level.
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Purpose Smallholder farmers are increasingly subject to different types of standards that offer specific conditions for their market incorporation. The proliferation of private and voluntary (civic) standards raises questions regarding their impact on farmers' welfare and their role in the upgrading of value chains. This paper aims to address this issue. Design/methodology/approach Based on extensive fieldwork and careful matching of 315 farmers in Northern Nicaragua who produce coffee under Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance and Café Practices labels or deliver to independent traders, the effects on income, production and investments are compared. Moreover, the implications of different contract conditions for risk behaviour, organizational force, loyalty and gender attitudes are assessed. Findings The paper finds that Fair Trade provides better prices compared with independent producers, but private labels out‐compete Fair Trade in terms of yield and quality performance. While Fair Trade can be helpful to support initial market incorporation, private labels offer more suitable incentives for quality upgrading. Research limitations/implications Civic standards exhibit major effects on local institutions' and farmers' behaviour, while B2B standards are more effective for improving production and management practices. Dynamic improvement standards may bridge the gap between both. Practical implications Fair Trade standards are useful to provide initial market access to small‐holders, but private standards offer better prospects for subsequent quality upgrading. Originality/value This is the first large‐scale comparative impact assessment of coffee standards that delivers unbiased empirical results.
Article
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Purpose Consumer sovereignty assumes that consumers have adequate product information and are able to understand that information in order to make an informed choice. However, this is not the case when consumers are confused. Recently, Walsh et al. identified dimensions of consumer confusion proneness and developed scales to measure these dimensions. Drawing on their concept of consumer confusion proneness, this paper seeks to examine consumers' general tendency to be confused from marketplace information and its effect on three relevant outcome variables – word of mouth, trust, and satisfaction. Design/methodology/approach The reliability and validity of the consumer confusion proneness scale was tested on the basis of a sample of 355 consumers, using confirmatory factor analysis. The study employs structural equation modelling to examine the hypothesised relationships. Findings The results show that the consumer confusion proneness scale has sound psychometric properties and that the three dimensions of similarity, overload, and ambiguity have a differential impact on word of mouth behaviour, trust, and customer satisfaction. Practical implications The findings have implications for marketing theory and management, as well as consumer education. Marketers may apply the consumer confusion proneness scale to their customers and assess which dimension is the most damaging in terms of the three marketing outcomes examined. Originality/value This is the first study to test Walsh et al. 's consumer confusion proneness scale and to extend their work by analysing the effect of the three construct dimensions on three key marketing outcome variables.
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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to position multinational companies on a linear continuum indicating their overall attitude towards standardisation/adaptation, examines the reasons influencing multinational companies' tactical (7Ps – marketing mix) behaviour towards it, and finally presents the underlying managerial implications of the results. Design/methodology/approach A rating scale Rasch model is used in order to place the multinational companies' attitude towards standardisation and adaptation on a linear continuum. Structural equation modelling is subsequently used in order to investigate the relationship between the adaptation and standardisation variable against other variables. An extensive literature review is also undertaken to provide the theoretical foundation. Findings The paper corroborates the findings of past research by placing multinational companies on a linear continuum; by identifying their overall attitude towards adaptation/standardization; and by describing the relationship between AdaptStand and other variables. Furthermore, it categorises the reasons pulling towards adaptation or standardisation into “significant” and “peripheral”; and provides valuable insights towards practical application. Practical implications The paper provides marketing researchers and practitioners with an overview of the main factors that influence marketing tactical behaviour in international markets. Additionally, the research transcends descriptive analysis to identify vital behavioural issues and to prescribe marketing approaches regarding internationalisation. Originality/value Though the subject of “adaptation versus standardisation” has been extensively researched, this paper provides original work through in‐depth quantitative analysis of a sufficient sample of multinational companies. The paper reaches specific and explicit conclusions that scientifically test existing theory on the subject, categorise factors according to their significance in the adaptation/standardisation decision process and offer valuable prescriptions of marketing tactics based on the findings.
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The debate about global integration (standardisation) versus responsiveness (adaptation) has recently been supplemented with perspectives that emphasise regionalisation. And while the discussion has also been extended from manufacturing to services, there are specific sectors and emergent topics that have not yet received much attention. This paper explores how accounting firms (Big Four) and particularly their sustainability services fit in the globalisation/regionalisation/localisation spectrum, and appear to standardise or adapt in main countries in the various regions around the world. Examined are the Big Four accounting firms in general, and their sustainability services in fifteen countries in five regions and globally, as presented on their respective websites. Findings show that, while overall the Big Four are somewhere between globalisation and bi-regionalisation, the traditional independent member firm structure appears to prevail in service offerings, as sustainability services do not exhibit standardisation and there are hardly signs of regionalisation/globalisation. This seems to result from special characteristics of services, such as inseparability of production and consumption, and local requirements regarding sustainability.
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Worldwide, studies have shown increases in environmental values and beliefs over the past four decades. However, in few cases have researchers observed parallel increases in environmentally-supportive behaviour (ESB). In fact, the gap between environmental values and ESB is of growing concern for both academics and practitioners. We explored 'the environmental values-behaviour gap' through a nationwide survey in Canada (n=1664). Approximately 72% of respondents 'self-report' a gap between their intentions and their actions. We explore three categories of explanatory variables to account for the gap: individual, household, and societal. The descriptive analysis presented here provides a better under-standing of why good intentions do not always translate into environmentally supportive behaviour. We demonstrate the relative importance of the three categories of constraint vari-ables.
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This paper reviews current regulatory approaches designed to correct market failures and distribute the benefits of liberalization to consumers in recently liberalised network industries. Present evaluations of the liberalisation process show that opening up markets to more competition has not yet resulted in either expected levels of competitiveness or in envisaged consumer benefits. Many consumer related failures were little anticipated; legislation to protect and assist consumers was either late coming or inadequate and often lacked effective enforcement. The paper examines market failures primarily related to the demand side; such as information asymmetries, unfair trade practices, unfair standard contract terms, high search and switching costs, and imperfect decision-making processes. It, however, discusses these imperfections in the broader context of market failures related to incoherent regulation and ineffective competition law enforcement and shows how poor coordination between these regulatory fields leads to suboptimal outcomes. The interplay between general consumer protection and specific consumer issues of sector regulation is discussed and elaborates on specific market deficiencies that draw attention to the intersection between consumer protection and competition law. The discussion incorporates theoretical insights from neoclassical and behavioural economics to consumer problems. The paper focuses on what the liberalization process, so far, has done for consumers by looking at and evaluating both the legislative and policy developments and recent proposals at European level as well as actual implementation and enforcement of these legislations at national level. More specifically, it deals with the energy and the telecommunications markets and their recent developments in the EU. Two case studies provide insight on national regulatory approaches: a case study of the liberalization of the Hungarian telecommunications market and a case study of the liberalization of the Dutch electricity market. The paper proposes a new mode of regulation as well as a new mode of coordination among different layers and fields of regulation and enforcement in order to remedy consumer problems and to achieve competitive markets.
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When it comes to the purchase of everyday goods such as coffee, tea and sugar, most consumers believe that sellers of Fair Trade products occupy the high moral ground. Despite its strong statements, however, the claims of the Fair Trade movement have not been tested properly. This important study, whilst not doubting the position that Fair Trade is part and parcel of a market economy, does question the claims made by the Fair Trade movement. The market economy and free trade – often decried by proponents of the Fair Trade movement – may deliver the benefits that the Fair Trade model brings without the costs and bureaucracy involved in obtaining the Fair Trade label. Furthermore, this study questions the exclusivity often claimed by Fair Trade organisations: there are other social labelling initiatives that perhaps have more transparent objectives. The author – a trade expert from Dundee University with broad practical experience of international trade – also finds that criticisms of Fair Trade are exaggerated, and he does accept that Fair Trade can bring some benefits to producers in particular circumstances. This study is essential reading for all those who wish to understand better this 21st-century consumer phenomenon and whether it actually delivers the benefits its proponents claim.
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This publication analyzes the use of voluntary standards and certification schemes in the food markets of the United States and Canada. With its large population and its high individual purchasing power, North America provides considerable opportunities for exports of value‑added agricultural products. Consumers are increasingly attentive to the social and environmental aspects of food production as evidenced by the significant expansion of certified food sales in both natural food stores and mainstream supermarket chains. The report assesses the market opportunities for developing countries aiming to export value-added certified foods to North America. After discussing the potential of various types of voluntary standards for adding value to agricultural products, it focuses on a few environmental and social certification schemes that use a registered on‑product label targeting consumers. Special emphasis is put on organic and fair‑trade certified agricultural products due to their value adding potential, their level of recognition by consumers and the strong and sustained growth of demand. The main product categories examined are tropical fruits, coffee and cocoa.
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This research examined the demographic profiles of Australian green consumers in relation to their satisfaction of environmental labelling. It examined consumers’ understanding of labelling and empirically investigated the association of demographic profile of consumers with their attitudes towards such labels. The results indicated that some of the demographic variables were significant, which is largely consistent with earlier findings by other researchers in this area. Label dissatisfaction was higher in the older and middle age respondents. However, some respondents disagreed that labels were accurate while commenting that labels were easy to understand. The key issue arising from the findings is that in order to provide perception of accuracy in labels, it is an option to use Type I or Type III labelling on products. These labels are, arguably, more credible because they are endorsed by third party labelling experts. This would come at a cost and for green products that use third party labelling, they will also have to bear in mind to keep the prices competitive.
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This paper critiques market based political action (consumption as voting) with the aim of assessing its use as a means of political and societal action capable of helping develop a sustainable economy. Despite being able to motivate change within the market place, overall it is found to be limited in its direct ability to affect social change and lead the development of a more sustainable economy. However, it is found to be a useful form of political participation that encourages engagement and has a role in sending general messages to governments regarding citizens' willingness to take action over important social and environmental issues. These conclusions are based on the finding that consumers' signals and market's reactions to specific campaigns within sustainable development may be inconsistent, unclear or weak. However, overall this market action does send clear messages regarding the broader issues and people's desire to see action upon them. Copyright (C) 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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Certification and labeling initiatives that seek to enhance environmental and social sustainability are growing rapidly. This article analyzes the expansion of these private regulatory efforts in the coffee sector. We compare the five major third-party certifications – the Organic, Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, Utz Kapeh, and Shade/Bird Friendly initiatives – outlining and contrasting their governance structures, environmental and social standards, and market positions. We argue that certifications that seek to raise ecological and social expectations are likely to be increasingly challenged by those that seek to simply uphold current standards. The vulnerability of these initiatives to market pressures highlights the need for private regulation to work in tandem with public regulation in enhancing social and environmental sustainability.
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Research in the U.S. on fair trade consumption is sparse. Therefore, little is known as to what motivates U.S. consumers to buy fair trade products. This study sought to determine which values are salient to American fair trade consumption. The data were gathered via a Web-based version of the Schwartz Value Survey (SVS) and were gleaned from actual consumers who purchase fair trade products from a range of Internet-based fair trade retailers. This study established that indeed there are significant interactions between personal values and fair trade consumption and that demographics proved to be useless in creating a profile of the American fair trade consumer.
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This is a case study investigating the growth of fair trade pioneer, Cafédirect. We explore the growth of the company and develop strategic insights on how Cafédirect has attained its prominent position in the UK mainstream coffee industry based on its ethical positioning. We explore the marketing, networks and communications channels of the brand which have led to rapid growth from niche player to a mainstream brand. However, the company is experiencing a slow down in its meteoric rise and we question whether it is possible for the company to regain its former momentum with its current marketing strategy.
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Environmental quality strongly depends on human behaviour patterns. We review the contribution and the potential of environmental psychology for understanding and promoting pro-environmental behaviour. A general framework is proposed, comprising: (1) identification of the behaviour to be changed, (2) examination of the main factors underlying this behaviour, (3) design and application of interventions to change behaviour to reduce environmental impact, and (4) evaluation of the effects of interventions. We discuss how environmental psychologists empirically studied these four topics, identify apparent shortcomings so far, and indicate major issues for future research.
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Coffee is a truly global commodity and a major foreign exchange earner in many developing countries. The global coffee chain has changed dramatically as a result of deregulation, new consumption patterns, and evolving corporate strategies. From a balanced contest between producing and consuming countries within the politics of international coffee agreements, power relations shifted to the advantage of transnational corporations. A relatively stable institutional environment where proportions of generated income were fairly distributed between producing and consuming countries turned into one that is more informal, unstable, and unequal. Through the lenses of global commodity chain analysis, this paper examines how these transformations affect developing countries and what policy instruments are available to address the emerging imbalances.
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This article uses a global commodity chains perspective to analyze the social and organizational dimensions of international trade networks. In linking international trade and industrial upgrading, this article specifies: the mechanisms by which organizational learning occurs in trade networks; typical trajectories from assembly to OEM and OBM export roles; and the organizational conditions that facilitate industrial upgrading moves such as the shift from assembly to full-package networks. The empirical focus is the apparel industry, with an emphasis on Asia.
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Some of the most difficult policy problems of the modern era have been described as complex, intractable, open-ended and 'wicked'. What are the key features of such problems? And are they really very different in nature from more routine problems? Are we developing better ways to address these wicked problems? This paper sketches some key aspects of wicked problems, and illustrates the discussion with two contemporary Australian examples - recent attempts to address the causes and possible solutions to Indigenous disadvantage; and policy responses to climate change.
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The growing economic value and consumer popularity of sustainability standards inevitably raise questions about the extent to which their structure and dynamics actually address many environmental, economic and public welfare issues. The Committee on Sustainable Assessment (COSA) was formed, in part, to develop a scientifically credible framework capable of assessing the impacts associated with the adoption of sustainability initiatives. This paper examines the pilot phase of vetting and testing the COSA method, an innovative management tool used to gather and analyze data using economic, environmental and social metrics.
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This investigation into the traceability baseline in the United States finds that private sector food firms have developed a substantial capacity to trace. Traceability systems are a tool to help firms manage the flow of inputs and products to improve efficiency, product differentiation, food safety, and product quality. Firms balance the private costs and benefits of traceability to determine the efficient level of traceability. In cases of market failure, where the private sector supply of traceability is not socially optimal, the private sector has developed a number of mechanisms to correct the problem, including contracting, third-party safety/quality audits, and industry-maintained standards. The best-targeted government policies for strengthening firms' incentives to invest in traceability are aimed at ensuring that unsafe of falsely advertised foods are quickly removed from the system, while allowing firms the flexibility to determine the manner. Possible policy tools include timed recall standards, increased penalties for distribution of unsafe foods, and increased foodborne-illness surveillance.
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In order to alleviate the impacts of the low coffee prices in recent years, sustainable coffee production and certification have been a logical strategy for many producers to: a) differentiate their product in the market place; and, b) shift their production cost structure away from more input intensive techniques. This paper explores the two most widely recognized certification schemes (organic and “fairtrade”) to determine whether certification to these systems is actually benefiting producers. It then explores the principal differences in production costs and price premiums for the two systems and their effect on different categories of producers. Finally, it considers the dynamics of the conventional and sustainable coffee markets to assess the likely medium to long-term economic outlook for producers involved in the certification schemes. The research is based on a combination of published sources and detailed primary source data (interviews and surveys) gathered by the CIMS Foundation.
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Since the collapse of the international coffee agreement in 1989, attention has increasingly focused on the role of multinational corporations in this sector. As the main actors in the international coffee chain, companies such as Sara Lee/Douwe Egberts, Nestlé and Kraft have been pressurised to show their responsibility in dealing with the crisis, and helping find a solution to the problem of which they are part as well. This article analyses the dynamic development of multinationals’ corporate responses and the interaction with the different stakeholders, which has resulted in a cascade of codes of conduct over the years. The peculiarities, dilemmas and challenges related to the recent multistakeholder ‘Common Code for the Coffee Community’ will be outlined, as well its (im)possibilities in dealing with the coffee crisis.
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The popularity of fair trade is growing swiftly in many parts of the world. As the fair trade market has grown, new kinds of participant have emerged and the field has become increasingly commercialized. However, there are also tensions between the different groups as to whether commercialization and mainstreaming benefit the ultimate aims of the movement. This paper presents a qualitative study of how the Finnish World Shop movement's key actors understand the movement's role and position in the developing fair trade market. The study discusses the polyphonic nature of this democratic social movement at the crossroads of continuing as a traditional solidarity movement or transforming into a more commercial organization. Furthermore, the findings highlight the implications these choices may have for sustainability in the World Shops' supply chain. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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Fair trade has gained attention as an innovative market-based mechanism for addressing social and environmental problems exacerbated by conventional global markets. Yet such initiatives are also regulatory mechanisms that establish voluntary alternative arrangements for governing production, commercialization and consumption of global commodities. Based on a recent study of fair trade coffee experiences in Latin America, this paper explores the changes that fair trade represents in governance of the coffee commodity chain. It argues that fair trade coffee governance is shaped both by formal organizational arrangements for coordination and control and, less formally, by the social and political relations embedded in fair trade's commodity chain. Fair trade's alternative governance arrangements represent one of the initiative's major accomplishments but also pose some of its most significant challenges for the future. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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Fair trade markets for commodities have considerable potential to contribute to the achievement of sustainable development goals, but realizing this potential will depend upon 'scaling up' fair trade's impact. Unfortunately, from a marketing and consumer behaviour perspective, fair trade markets remain relatively under-researched and poorly understood in comparison to the mainstream. Using fair trade coffee as an example, this paper proposes an alternative to the dominant view that the key to expanding fair trade market share is a focus on greater 'commercialization'. It highlights the potential of social marketing to promote the principles of fair trade, in a way that complements the emphasis on brand-building strategies for fair trade products. An approach that blends a commercial and social marketing orientation perhaps has the greatest potential to maintain fair trade's distinctive nature, while contributing to the achievement of its social and economic goals. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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Questions remain about the effectiveness of fair trade, especially in comparison with free trade approaches to development. Both strategies seek to benefit smallholder farmers in lower-income countries, who are vulnerable to declining and fluctuating commodity prices and rising production costs. This study examines two prominent market-based interventions, Fairtrade certification and TechnoServe business development, as they are implemented at two coffee producer organizations in Tanzania. Qualitative and secondary quantitative data were collected using rapid appraisal methodology during three months of field research. The data were analyzed using the sustainable livelihood framework. This study concludes that both intervention strategies yield potentially valuable results for smallholders in multiple domains, but each is distinctly suited to specific market conditions. Implications of the study's findings are discussed in terms of an emerging consensus on intervention strategies. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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The ‘attitude–behaviour gap’ or ‘values–action gap’ is where 30% of consumers report that they are very concerned about environmental issues but they are struggling to translate this into purchases. For example, the market share for ethical foods remains at 5 per cent of sales. This paper investigates the purchasing process for green consumers in relation to consumer technology products in the UK. Data were collected from 81 self-declared green consumers through in depth interviews on recent purchases of technology products. A green consumer purchasing model and success criteria for closing the gap between green consumers' values and their behaviour are developed. The paper concludes that incentives and single issue labels (like the current energy rating label) would help consumers concentrate their limited efforts. More fundamentally, ‘being green’ needs time and space in people's lives that is not available in increasingly busy lifestyles. Implications for policy and business are proposed. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.
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It is widely believed that International Commodity Agreements have lapsed because they have failed. The reality is more complex. The tin agreement did collapse, but for sugar and cocoa adverse market conditions and lack of general support made stabilization impractical. Control of the coffee market ceased largely because of disagreements both between and within the producing countries on the division of the benefits resulting from higher prices. Overall, commodity control fits uneasily in an increasingly globalized and competitive world, and this perception has resulted in a diminished willingness to resolve the practical difficulties of price stabilization.
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How do multinationals address conflicting norms and expectations? This article focuses on corporate codes of ethics in the area of child labor as possible expressions of Strategic International Human Resource Management. It analyses whether 50 leading multinationals adopt universal ethical norms (related to exportive HRM) or relativist ethical norms (related to adaptive HRM and multidomestic strategies). Child labor is not an issue where universalism prevails. Although some multinationals adhere to universal ethical norms, HRM practices are largely multidomestic. To manage the ethical dilemmas, shown from case material, strategic trade-offs (concerning strategy context, process and content, and particularly organizational purpose) are outlined.
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In this study, a face-to-face survey was conducted in order to reveal consumer preferences for ethical and environmentally sound labeling programs in coffee. Valuation questions regarding the fair trade, shade grown, and organic coffee labels were asked using a payment card format, after consumers were previously informed about each of the labeling programs. Results suggest that consumers are very receptive toward both fair trade and shade grown coffee labels, and consequently are willing to pay higher premiums for these labeling programs than for the organic coffee.