Ethical certifications on coffee

Multinational corporations have gotten into the fair trade coffeee market. Each of the Big Four coffee roaster (Nestle, Kraft, Sara Lee, and Procter & Gamble) has a brand or brands which are certifed under one or another seal. Nestle has a Fair Trade certified brand, Kraft and Procter & Gamble have brands which have been certified by the Rainforest Alliance. Meanwhile Sara Lee has a brand certified by a Dutch organization.

The Observer has a lengthy article this week regarding the coffee market and the proliferation of ethical marketing certifications. The second half of the article looks at Kraft's purchases of Rainforest Alliance certified coffee in El Salvador and the benefits communities have achieved where they have converted to the agricultural and labor practices required for the certification.