"Starbucks is committed to positively affecting the lives of coffee farmers through championing business practices that produce social, environmental and economic change," said Orin Smith, president and ceo of Starbucks Coffee Company. "Our partnership with CI demonstrates the positive impact of how the corporate and non-profit sectors can work in tandem to provide high quality coffee while improving the quality of farmers' lives and protecting the environment."
The award was presented at the World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa on Saturday, August 31. The ICC and UNEP received more than 120 partnership nominations from 37 countries - involving businesses, industry sector associations, non-governmental organizations, governments and international agencies and institutions. The International Selection Panel, under the Chairmanship of Lord Holme of Cheltenham, completed final assessment and evaluation of the submitted nominations. Thirty-two partnerships were formally recognized during the World Summit.
"By working with Conservation International on projects from Shade Grown Mexico to coffee purchasing guidelines, Starbucks continues to show they are a leadership company when it comes to biodiversity protection and sustainability issues," said Glenn Prickett, vice president at Conservation International and executive director of the Center for Environmental Leadership in Business. "This award demonstrates that the conservation community and the private sector can successfully collaborate to create a net benefit for business and the environment."
The partnership between Starbucks and Conservation International began in 1998 with the creation of CI's Conservation Coffee(tm) project site in Chiapas, Mexico. Results from the partnership to date include a 60 percent price premium over local prices to farmers and a 220 percent increase in the coffee growing land preserved as tropical forests. Currently six farming cooperatives representing 700 farmers are participating in the program. In 2000, Starbucks elevated its commitment to CI by helping to begin replication of CI's Conservation Coffee(tm) program in Colombia and other coffee origin countries.
Today, Shade Grown Mexico coffee is available in Starbucks North American coffeehouses, many of Starbucks international markets and online at Starbucks.com. The coffee is also available to Starbucks business accounts including hotels, colleges and restaurants in the U.S. and Canada. The amount of shade grown coffee purchased by Starbucks has increased from 75,000 pounds in 1999, to 304,000 pounds in fiscal 2000, and 723,000 pounds in fiscal 2001. In fiscal 2002, Starbucks estimates purchasing 1.5 million pounds of the coffee to roast and make available to consumers. Starbucks® Shade Grown Mexico coffee is part of the company's Commitment to Origins(tm) coffee offering line-up.
The partnership expanded again in November 2001, when Starbucks launched new coffee purchasing guidelines developed with The Center for Environmental Leadership in Business, a division of Conservation International. The goal of the guidelines is to support Starbucks commitment to purchase coffee that has been grown and processed by suppliers who meet important environmental, social, economic and quality standards. To launch the guidelines, Starbucks is enlisting the support of coffee suppliers who are sustainability advocates. Additionally, Starbucks is supporting its suppliers who fully meet these guidelines by providing them with purchasing preferences and price premiums.