Our Approach to Sustainable Sourcing

Our Approach to Sustainable Sourcing

Our Approach to Sustainable Sourcing

For a coffee to be truly sustainable, it all begins at the source, as soon as the land is tilled and the first seeds are sown. For us, organic and fair trade farming is the first and most crucial step in realizing our ambition to offer the most sustainable coffee possible.

When a product carries the Fairtrade Mark, it means the producers and traders have met the Fairtrade Standards. More precisely, the Fairtrade Standards are “designed to address the imbalance of power in trading relationships, unstable markets and the injustices of conventional trade.”


Organic Beauty

Organic certification is not just a seal on packaging. Café William offers you a range of certified organic coffees because it truly makes a difference. Farmers working in harmony with nature, improved crop biodiversity, a balanced ecosystem—that's what organic farming is all about. And much more.
In the coffee industry, farming is the supply chain stage that makes the greatest difference for our planet. Organic farming doesn't use any pesticides, chemicals, or herbicides, and that's what sets it apart. Studies on greenhouse gas emissions demonstrate that over 30% of emissions come from the use of fossil fuel-based fertilizers and pesticides in conventional agriculture—ouch!
Thanks to organic farming, people working the land can combat diseases and weeds without jeopardizing their own health. The production of organic beans takes care of both the farmer and the inhabitants of their community, as well as the water, land, and air. All of this enables us to offer coffee that not only tastes good but also does good.


Fair Trade Sets the Table

Almost all the coffee beans we purchase are Fairtrade certified. Fairtrade means fair. This certification is dear to us because it pushes the notion of sustainable agriculture even further.
First and foremost, when a product bears the Fairtrade mark, it means that the people involved adhere to Fairtrade standards. Specifically, Fairtrade standards "aim to correct the imbalance of power in commercial relationships, unstable markets, and injustices in conventional trade. The Fairtrade mark is the most widely recognized and trusted ethical label in the world."
Fair trade is an alternative to conventional trade. In fact, it relies on collaboration between producers and consumers. Thanks to Fairtrade-certified purchases you make at the grocery store, for example, coffee producers benefit from substantial incomes that allow them to improve their living conditions. In summary, a percentage of the sales of their coffee goes directly to them. This enables them to improve the yield and quality of their production while allowing you to enjoy sustainable coffee.
"By choosing fair trade coffee, you encourage over 750,000 coffee producers to thrive, receiving a decent income despite an unstable market, and enabling them to protect their local environment and invest in their farms and communities." - Fairtrade Canada


Fairtrade Minimum Price

Fairtrade guarantees a minimum price of US $ 1.80 / lb for the purchase of coffee. Certified coffee growers therefore make sure to sell their coffee at a higher fixed price if the market price is too low. If the market price is higher than the minimum price, members will get the higher price. For farmers, the minimum price serves as a safety net against price instability, as the price of coffee can fluctuate every three minutes! Thanks to better price stability, producers are able to better cover their production costs.
Fairtrade is the only global sustainability certification that guarantees a Minimum Price for coffee.

Fairtrade Premium

This is extra money paid to co-ops, which they can use as they see fit. The premium, equivalent to US $ 20 / lb, is paid in addition to the price of the coffee. So we can say unequivocally that every bag counts!
Thanks to this amount, members are able to invest in projects that are close to their heart, such as the construction of various infrastructures for education or health, the acquisition of new, more efficient tools, or even better access to clean water.
Coffee growers may also receive an Organic Differential (if the coffee is organic) of US 40 ¢ / lb to help them keep their coffee production organic.
In short, the cooperative receives the Minimum Price + the Premium + the Organic Differential (depending on the coffee produced). The graph below illustrates how Fairtrade succeeds in providing a more decent and fair wage to coffee producers. To find out more about the concrete projects that can be put in place with the various amounts donated by Fairtrade, check out our blog article on the initiatives of the inhabitants of Sumatra Island!


Fairtrade Canada license fees

In order to maintain complete transparency, be aware that Café William must also pay a certain amount for Fairtrade license fees. These are costs associated with the use of the mark on the bags, and these are based on the sale of Fairtrade coffees in the market. License rights are invested in projects such as market development, consumer education and awareness, funding of producer networks, etc
What does this change concretely for producers
  • Products sold at a fair price, for a fairer salary

  • Investments in projects essential to the well-being of their community

  • Better sustainable agricultural practices

  • Greater participation of women through Fairtrade equity programs

What that changes for you

  • You help break the cycle of poverty in coffee producing countries

  • You allow producers to flourish socially, environmentally and economically

  • You invest in the sustainability of the coffee culture, increasingly neglected by young people

  • You are making a real difference in the lives of the 125 million people who depend on the sale of coffee for their livelihood

Every time you drink a cup of Fairtrade certified coffee, you can be sure that the farmer who grew the beans is getting a fair deal.

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