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Organic CoffeeUSDA Organic

Organic coffee is coffee that has been grown according to organic farming standards and techniques, without the use of artificial fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides.

Organic agriculture stimulates the environment’s natural development of disease and pest control. Because much organic coffee is shade grown, large amounts of forest may be preserved. This preservation has many additional benefits: minimizing soil erosion, preserving habitat, especially for birds; further, the leaves from the trees and bird droppings naturally fertilize the soil. Birds also control pests by eating insects that eat the leaves of coffee plants.

Many coffee producers exclusively use the three main coffee certifications: shade grown, organic, and Fair Trade. They do this in an effort to create a more environmentally and socially responsible product as well as to market it to more affluent socially responsible consumers.

The initial amount of capital needed to grow an organic coffee crop is less than traditional because it does not require up front purchase of synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. It typically yields a smaller crop and thus the farms tend to make less money relative to the size of the farm. In 2006, 67,000 metric tons of organic coffee were sold in the world, while world coffee consumption, including both organic and non-organic coffee was estimated at approximately 6,900,000 metric tons in 2005.

The term organic can also refer to farms, or products from them which incorporate socially responsible activities such as recycling, composting, soil health and environmental protections.


Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_coffee

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