Melitta and 4C unite to support Colombian coffee farmers


Melitta Europa has sourced the first shipment of coffee produced and certified in connection with the 4C project ‘Improving working and living conditions for coffee smallholders in Colombia’.

Under the joint project 4C and Melitta are working together with  coffee growers in the Magdalena region.

A major milestone of the project was achieved at the end of 2021, when 437 smallholder coffee farmers became 4C certified. Following this achievement, in early 2022 Melitta purchased its first batch of 4C certified, traceable coffee from the project beneficiaries at a price premium.

“With the 4C certification we take care of our environment, becoming more sustainable in the long term and adding value to our coffee, which allows us to improve our income,” says Richard Becerra, a coffee farmer in the Magdalena region of Colombia.

Since the project began in 2020, 4C and its implementing partner Federación Nacional de Cafeteros have conducted 386 individual and group on-farm trainings and online workshops. These trainings provided smallholder coffee farmers with the technical assistance they need to implement effective management practices and prepare for the 4C audit.

“We are very proud that the first green coffees from the project region in Colombia have been shipped to Bremen. This shows the great progress made in the project, and that under the challenging circumstances. Many thanks to the partners involved that this milestone has been reached as planned,” says Jan Rischkopf, Sustainability Manager of Melitta Europa.

In 2022 the project will continue to support additional coffee growers to gradually improve their production practices to maintain the 4C certification. This will be done through further trainings, online and on the farms.

“Strong and direct market links between coffee producers and international markets are key to improve livelihoods of coffee communities and build sustainable supply chains. We are very proud that with its partners 4C has been able to contribute to this important outcome, despite the difficult COVID framework conditions,” says Norbert Schmitz, Managing Director of 4C Services.

Among other activities, trainings specifically aimed at youths in the Magdalena region will be organised on topics such as ecotourism, barista skills, coffee tasting and entrepreneurship.

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