This refers to coffee beans that are grown and processed according to a rigorous set of guidelines that are monitored at each stage by an independent certifying agency. The guidelines specify the type of allowable inputs of organic fertilizers, integrated pest management, and other organic weed and fungus controls.
Rainforest Alliance Coffee
Rainforest Alliance certification is a comprehensive process that promotes and guarantees improvements in agriculture, forestry and travel. Their independent seal of approval ensures that goods and services were produced in compliance with strict guidelines protecting the environment, wildlife, workers and local communities. Certification gives consumers a say in how farms are managed. Shoppers who want to encourage good land stewardship and ecosystem conservation can shop for certified products.
Fair Trade Certification
The Fair Trade Certified™ label is the only independent, third-party consumer guarantee that companies have complied with strict economic, social and environmental criteria for particular products, thereby creating a more equitable and sustainable trade system for producers.
The principal criteria of Fair Trade certification are:
Direct trade with farmer organizations, bypassing unnecessary middlemen
Fair prices for farmers, and decent working and living conditions for workers
Free association of workers and farmers, with structures for democratic decision-making
Access to pre-financing, and additional premiums for community and business development
Sustainable agricultural and farm management practices, including restricted use of agrochemicals and no GMOs
When consumers see a product with the Fair Trade Certified label, they are guaranteed that farmers received a fair price and all of the other benefits of the Fair Trade system. To date, sales of Fair Trade Certified products have supplied nearly $80 million in above-market revenue to millions of farmers, workers and their families in over 50 developing countries worldwide. http://www.transfairusa.org/