New platform to promote sustainable coffee

07 June 2024 11:58

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Bern - Switzerland accounts for a share of 50 percent in the global volume of coffee exports. Stakeholders from the coffee industry, politics, science and wider society have now joined forces with the aim of bolstering the sustainable credentials of the coffee sector. To this end, they have launched the Swiss Sustainable Coffee Platform.

The Swiss coffee industry and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) launched the Swiss Sustainable Coffee Platform (SSCP) together with organizations and representatives from the world of science on June 6 in Bern. Switzerland is the world’s largest coffee trading hub, accounting for over 50 percent of the total volume of global coffee exports, as the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and research (EAER) writes in a press release. The parties behind the new platform have committed to making a concrete contribution to the development of a sustainable coffee industry. In terms of specific aims, the press release highlights aspects such as ensuring decent incomes for farmers, tackling climate change and protecting human rights.  

In its press release, the EAER reproduced an excerpt from a speech by Guy Parmelin, who heads up the department as part of his role in the Federal Council, the Swiss federal government, held to mark the launch of the new platform: “Our economic cooperation activities will have a much greater impact in partner countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam and Peru if there is closer collaboration with the Swiss private sector. The Swiss Sustainable Coffee Platform will allow our companies to greatly improve compliance with due diligence requirements across their value chains”.

Among the parties involved in the platform from the world of business are the industry associations Swiss Coffee Trade Association (SCTA), Procafé and the Swiss Roaster Guild, which have been brought together under the umbrella organization Community of Interest Coffee Switzerland. “Both the Swiss Coffee Trade Association and our member companies have been calling for greater sustainability in the coffee value chain for years”, comments SCTA President, Nicolas A. Tamari, in the press release, before adding: “However, a lot of work remains to be done. We are convinced that this platform is the right path to taking shared responsibility”.

One of the companies behind the new platform is the Swiss branch of the Nzatu Food Group based in Johannesburg, South Africa. Nzatu pursues a regenerative agricultural model that seeks to preserve both natural resources and habitats for wild animals. “At, based in Colombier (NE), we are very proud to be part of this project”, as Michele Sofisti, co-founder of Nzatu, writes in a LinkedIn post. ce/hs

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