Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) announced that it acquired a 240-hectare coffee farm in Costa Rica to expand its $70 million comprehensive ethical sourcing program to help the coffee farming communities worldwide in mitigating the impact of climate change to support long-term crop stability.
Starbucks Corporation said it would develop a new farming research and development center in Costa Rica to achieve its goals. According to the coffee company, its programs are part of its billion-dollar commitment to source 100 percent of its coffee ethically by 2015.
The coffee company said, the 240-hectare coffee farm is located on the slopes of the Poas Volcano. Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) plans to transform the area into a global agronomy center and boost its Coffee and Farming Equity practices (C.A.F.E), which is the primary ethical sourcing model in the coffee industry in partnership with Conservation International. The practice ensures the quality of the coffee while promoting environment, economic, and social standards.
In a statement, Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) CEO Howard Schultz expressed that the coffee farm would provide the company with an opportunity to innovate with proprietary coffee varieties that supports the development of future blends.
“This investment, and the cumulative impact it will have when combined with programs we have put into place over the last forty years, will support the resiliency of coffee farmers and their families as well as the one million people that represent our collective coffee supply chain,” Schultz added.
Over the past 40 years, Starbucks has already invested $70 million in collaborative farmer programs including C.A.F.E. practices, farmer support centers, farmer loans and forest carbon projects. All of these programs have directly improved the livelihood of farmers and the long-term supply of high-quality coffee.
According to Starbucks, the new coffee farm will build on and increase the amount of work in the farmer support centers of the company located in China, Colombia, Rwanda, Tanzania, and San Jose, Costa Rica, which are home to agronomist and experts in growing high-quality Arabica coffee.
“The convergence of climate change and ecosystem deterioration creates stress on the ability of farmers to produce crops. The work of Starbucks over the last several years to address many of these issues facing coffee producers – including the environmental, economic and social development of coffee production – is very impressive. The opportunity this continued investment brings will ensure the most innovative resources are brought to bear for sustainability and resilience across all farming communities,” said Peter Seligmann, chairman and CEO of Conservation International