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Monday, January 28, 2013

The Philippines & Coffee: Cashing In Without Selling Out

Last year many people came out to screenings of our documentary about Indigenous Peoples in the Philippines. If you never got a chance to see it, you can watch the documentary here.

Knowing exactly how difficult their circumstances are makes the strides they take forward into health and self-reliance all the more impressive. Lately we have been excited about the new venture that many of our friends in the Philippines are becoming involved with. We’re helping Indigenous farming families to enter the organic coffee market, and the prospects for success look very good.

It’s not uncommon for farmers in Mindanao, the Philippines, to grow coffee. What’s less common is for farmers to process the coffee they have produced. Because they have to sell the raw, green beans to a middleman, they miss out on the lion’s share of the profits. We’re helping these families to roast their own coffee according to the high standard of quality that the international market demands.

It’s going to make a big difference at the end of the day. What’s also wonderful is that they are learning how best to grow large yields of coffee using sustainable practices that will replenish their land and ensure its viability over the long-term. They do not want to make a profit today and lose everything tomorrow.

Congratulations to our intrepid friends in the Philippines. They are always willing to work hard for the sake of preserving their environment, their culture, and their children’s welfare. Organic coffee is going to help them to do all of this.