One Tree for Every Bag

Photo by Anastasia
  • now Isabella
  • I thought this blog was about plants
  • why are you bringing Starbucks into this?
  • because they’re doing a really cool thing right now
  • and it just so happens to relate directly to plants
  • it is a coffee franchise after all
  • so it’s directly linked to plants in the first place
Photo by Miguel Angel de la Cueva
  • and they take that direct linkage seriously
  • the One Tree for Every Bag program is run via the partnership between Starbucks and Conservation International
  • a nonprofit, environmental organization based in Arlington, Virginia
  • the two work together in an effort to promote sustainable coffee farming
  • for every bag of Starbucks coffee beans you buy, Starbucks donates 70 cents
  • or the cost of a new tree
  • to Conservation international
  • CI then uses that money to make grants to nurseries that will give the coffee trees directly to farmers in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Indonesia
  • coffee is currently an at risk crop because of climate change, so replacing trees has to happen more often, and farmers are struggling
  • (read more about that here)
  • this replanting project is good for both agriculture and conservation
  • the farmers that participate in the program must agree to
  • not plant the new trees in natural forest areas
  • allow any existing shade trees to continue growing in the vicinity of the coffee trees, so long as they do not entirely shade out the saplings
  • and to acknowledge the fact that they are choosing to be a part of this program out of their own free will
  • no one is forcing farmers to be conservationists
  • but they get some perks if the participate in the preservation

For the last fifteen years, Starbucks and CI have been working together to “produce coffee in a way that is sustainable, transparent, and good for people and the planet”. I can’t help but be appreciative of environmentalist efforts coming from multinational companies like Starbucks. There is hope for corporate good in this consumerist society of ours.

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