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GO BACK TO INTRODUCTION "LIFECYCLE"

Farming

For NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto®, we source 18,000 tonnes of coffee
from a wide range of countries, including Brazil, Kenya and
Ethiopia which represents around 310 km2 of arable land.
Responsible farming, with its major environmental, social and
economic challenges, is a top priority for NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto®.
As a result, we launched a global project with the Rainforest
Alliance*
focussing on developing responsible coffee and improving
farmers’ livelihoods by helping them to achieve higher yields
and better quality.

Challenges

  • Coffee farming is still an important activity in many of the traditional coffee origins and is said to employ approx. 25mill. people on coffee farms. In many of these coffee growing regions, “coffee” has a long history and an important weight in the generation and distribution of income for the coffee farmers, the farm workers and their respective communities. With all this, we are seeing some opportunities and challenges.
  • In many of the coffee growing regions, coffee farmers have very low incomes due to the small size of the farms, the ageing of plants and the coffee market price variability. Furthermore, inefficient agricultural techniques or inappropriate chemical treatment might significantly reduce annual yields and total production with a potential impact on the environment too. Improving the farmers’ income through yield improvement, efficiencies and overall environmental performance is a key issue for the future of coffee production.
 

Our Goals

  • Procure 180,000 tons of green coffee direct from 170,000 farmers by 2015*
  • Distributing 220 million plantlets by 2020* in order to increase farms’ productivity yield and make coffee production more economically attractive.
*Public commitments of the NESCAFÉ Plan
 

What We Are Doing

  • Helped by the Rainforest Alliance and our trade partners, our farming experts provide specific training directly to farmers. We give them new tools and techniques as well as support so that they can better manage their farms in environmentally, socially and economically responsible ways. We define the content of the training activities and other development projects, making sure we take into account specific local needs (e.g. soil analysis for fertilisers, access to potable water). For this purpose, we have developed the NESCAFÉ® Better Farming Practices, together with the Rainforest Alliance.
  • Right now, we are pioneering research into new coffee varieties that have the potential to triple or even quadruple yields when properly.

    Currently, several varieties have been developed that are better adapted to local conditions and are distributed to farmers since 2010.

    Over time, we will further increase and speed up distribution of these new varieties in line with the above mentioned objectives. All this helps to ensure coffee supply meets increased demand without the need for more farmland and help us reach our goals. These developments also allow farmers to venture into crop diversification and enable reforestation.

 

What We Have Achieved

  • 76,000 farmers have been trained in agricultural best practices since the launch of the NESCAFÉ® Plan in August 2010.
  • More than 30 million high yield plants have been distributed in the same period (in less than 3 years).

Challenges

  • Coffee farming in the 21st Century faces several environmental challenges. For NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto®, coffee bean production and processing is responsible for 30% of the total amount of greenhouse gas emission created during the coffee cup life cycle and the artificial irrigation of coffee plants accounts for 63% of water consumption during the product life cycle. Furthermore, potential overuse of fertilisers and pesticides might impact biodiversity as well as water and soil quality.
  • Coffee farming also faces social and economic challenges, such as difficult working conditions, seasonality of the crop and poor incomes.
 

Our Goals

  • More than 90% of the coffee we purchase will be responsibly sourced, compliant with the Common Code for the Coffee Community Association (4C) principles by 2015.
 

What We Are Doing

  • We are one of the founding members of 4C, the Common Code for the Coffee Community Association. The code was created to encourage environmentally and socially responsible practices amongst 4C members. The 4C association provides additional expertise, tools and support to help members engage in responsible farming, including a support services team and an independent verification process. In order to stay compliant with the Code, 4C members commit to continually improve the overall social, economic and environmental impact of farming, as well as working to eradicate 10 unacceptable practices as outlined in the code. For more information, follow this link: 4c-coffeeassociation.org.
  • In the fields, our agricultural experts and trade partners are helping farmers and cooperatives to implement the 4C criteria.
  • Our procurement department is working to increase the overall amount of 4C verified coffee purchased each year in line with the above mentioned ambition.
 

What We Have Achieved

  • In 2012, 70% of NESCAFÉ® Dolce Gusto® coffee is responsibly sourced