Soaring coffee prices mean good times for peasant growers, but because financial speculation in part is fueling the prices, the high price tags eventually could threaten suppliers of organic and other “socially conscious” coffees.
This is reported by the daily news magazine The State in the USA. U.S. retail coffee prices are up more than 20 percent over the past 12 months and more than 57 percent in commodity markets.It’s a windfall for growers after nearly a decade of horrible prices.
In some cases, however, middlemen are now offering coffee growers and cooperatives better prices on the open market than they receive through long-term agreements with fair trade initiatives. Some farmers are now accepting the better offers from the middlemen, leaving the fair trade companies struggling with the risk of defaulting on contracts.