Climate Academy helps coffee farmers in the fight against climate change

Climate Academy helps coffee farmers in the fight against climate change

News item
10 Sep 2018

A world without coffee? “That’s not possible, is it?”, we hear you think. Unfortunately, this is indeed a possibility. Climate change is one of the biggest challenges for coffee farmers. Because the coffee plant is extremely sensitive to temperature changes, its production is at risk.

Coffee harvests are deteriorating due to the unpredictability of the climate, among other things. Due to frost, hurricanes, floods and the like, around 25 million farmers could see their income drop by 90% in the next 15 years. Poverty is high among small coffee farmers in developing countries. Climate change is a major challenge for them.

The Climate Academy
Without strong action to reduce CO₂ emissions, the area under coffee production is expected to decline by 50 percent by 2050. This means that coffee could become a scarce commodity in the coming decades.

That is why Max Havelaar started the Fairtrade Climate Academy last year, thanks to a contribution from the National Postcode Lottery. The Climate Academy not only helps farmers adapt their production methods, but also investigates new sources of income. By locally sharing and applying insights, skills and techniques that make the consequences of climate change more manageable for farmers, they learn from each other and from experts.

The first Climate Academy was a great success in Kenya, so it is time to scale up. Last summer, the second Academy was started in Oromia, Ethiopia, in collaboration with FairClimateFund. To make Oromia coffee farmers more resilient to the consequences of climate change, efforts are being made to strengthen organizations, switch to sustainable energy and of course encourage sustainable production methods.

Cleaner cookstoves
The transition to sustainable energy sources is an important pillar of the Climate Academy. FairClimateFund plays a major role in this. In collaboration with FairClimateFund, approximately 500 coffee farmers will have access to cleaner cookstoves that reduce wood use and CO₂ emissions by 40%. This makes farmers less dependent on firewood as a primary energy source. This is good for forest conservation. The social conditions of farmers and their family members are also improving significantly. The cookstoves especially have a positive impact on women. Imagine the difference it makes when you no longer have to spend hours collecting wood. The time savings frees up space for other activities that earn money. In addition, the new energy source promotes the safety and health of family members. Especially children, because they no longer come into contact with the open fire and the very harmful smoke that comes from it.

Everyone can help
A fair price is necessary for farmers to deal with climate change. This enables them to adapt to the consequences of changing weather conditions. By choosing Fairtrade you support this process every time you drink a cup of coffee. To draw extra attention to this, Max Havelaar has launched a limited edition coffee together with Peeze: Coffee to Stay. The 100% Fairtrade coffee is purchased directly from the farmers participating in the first Climate Academy.

By buying the coffee you support our farmers and buy coffee with a future! So order your pack of coffee quickly and together we will turn coffee to go, Coffee to Stay! See for further information