Three-year-old Colombian coffee producer Green Coffee Company (GCC) has attained Rainforest Alliance certification for all 11 of its company-operated farms.
Unlike most producer groups or cooperatives, which might hold group certification covering scores or hundreds of individual smallholder farms, GCC owns and operates its 11 farms as a single consolidated network.
According to the company, the newly achieved RA certification makes GCC the largest individual RA-certified coffee farm owner/operator in the country.
GCC’s 11 coffee farms encompass nearly 1,000 hectares around Salgar in the Antioquia department in the heart of the Colombian coffeelands, while the company launched with strong market connections in North America.
“Out of our total production for this harvest, we anticipate around 6,500 bags will be sold RA-certified,” GCC’s Alec Lee told DCN in October. “Next year, several lots on various farms will produce their first mature crops, so we anticipate a large increase in RA exports for 2022.”
Lee said GCC is currently exploring numerous other pathways for implementing and verifying sustainable coffee production practices. In-house initiatives currently include an employment structure that formalizes protections for workers and a reforestation initiative on the farms.
The company is also in the midst of pursuing B Corp certification and undergoing an evaluation through third-party sustainability auditor Enveritas.
“Since our founding in 2018, the Green Coffee Company has been committed to making a positive impact in both our local community of Salgar as well as with our partners around the globe,” said GCC Vice President Taylor Love. “This certification represents a tremendous effort by our entire team and signifies that the GCC will continue its commitment to a more sustainable future.”