Coffee certifications let consumers be aware of the farming practices used to produce a certain coffee. Producers are incentivized to take steps to become certified because of the opportunity to sell coffee at higher per-pound prices. In turn, buyers look to certified coffees because of the transparency associated with certifications, the opportunity for higher retail pricing, and the opportunity to support organizations prioritizing sustainable agricultural practices.
Here are some coffee certifications:
USDA ORGANIC: The USDA Organic Certification on our products regulates organic agricultural practices by ensuring the preservation or enhancement of water and soil quality; wetlands, woodlands, and wildlife conservation; and preventing the use of synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation, and genetic engineering. USDA Organic coffee also averages a $.0255 per pound increase in market price for coffee producers.
FAIR TRADE: The Fair Trade Certification seeks to increase welfare for small farming families and communities by safeguarding ethical trade practices at every stage in the supply chain. A Fair Trade Certification guarantees a minimum market price for all Fair Trade coffee plus up to a $0.20 premium per pound. All Fair Trade premiums are designated for social, economic and environmental development projects that are democratically selected by each community based upon greatest need.
RAINFOREST ALLIANCE CERTIFIED: The Rainforest Alliance Certified seal ensures that our coffee is regularly audited to meet strict standards of social, environmental and economic sustainability. These standards seek to promote and continuously improve biodiversity, natural resource conservation, effective planning and farm management systems, and improved livelihoods and human well-being.
SMBC BIRD FRIENDLY CERTIFICATION: The Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center's Bird Friendly Certification is the only shade-grown and 100% organic coffee certification. This seal ensures the preservation of "agroforests" by preventing rampant clear-cutting for sun coffee plantations and requiring a variety of native shade trees on all Bird-Friendly certified coffee plantations. Bird Friendly coffee plantations are regularly monitored and must be recertified every three years to ensure proper compliance.