Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Wednesday's Good Deed: Feel Good Coffee

(photo courtesy of

Are you an avid coffee drinker? I don't drink coffee everyday but drink it often enough. This morning I brew myself a fresh cup of coffee that is made from coffee beans certified organic, fair traded, and shade grown! It tastes good and feels good. I think coffee beans are one of the few produces that have so many kinds of certification, since it is the most popular drink in the world and are among the top traded agricultural products.

It is no brainer to explain the meaning of organic. By eliminating the use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers in growing the coffee beans, you are helping the environment, the farmers, and the consumers like you and me to have a healthier life. Fair trade certification is relatively new. It is growing rapidly in the recent years along side with organically certified produces (e.g., coffee, chocalate, tea, and sugar etc.). Fair trade is to make sure that farmers who grow the produce are being treated ethically and being compensated fairly by the owners and traders for their products. Lastly, shade-grown is indicating that the coffee beans are grown under the canopy of trees, where coffee trees are grown without clearing the forest. This practice protects the wildlife, especially birds, and avoids disastrous deforestation of the virgin forest. Shade grown is not officially a type of certification per se, but it will be mentioned on the package of the product for the conscious consumers.

By carefully selecting your coffee beans, you are helping the environment, the wildlife, and the farmers indirectly. Luckily, it is not difficult to find such products in your local grocery stores and it often does not cost a lot more than regular coffee beans (ok, maybe a little, but you don't buy coffee beans everyday right?). Brew yourself a cup of coffee and feel good about it!

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