Fairtrade – Living income assessment of coffee farmers


Fairtrade International is a multi-stakeholder association with 3 producer networks, 25 local (Fairtrade) organisations, and an overarching independent certification body called FLOCERT. As brand influencer, Fairtrade communicates the value of externalities to stakeholders at retail and consumer level.

Project description

True With the help of the Impact Institute, In line with Fairtrade’s ambition to see small-scale farmers earning a living income that provides them with a sustainable, dignified livelihood, a study by the Impact Institute was done to assess the actual coffee farmer household income. We developed a rigorous and scalable methodology to measure the farmer household income of coffee producers across 7 countries, being: Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, India, Indonesia and Vietnam. Through local contacts, data from approximately 500 farms was collected. Collected data on wages and incomes was then compared to regional benchmarks. The analysis included insights in the distribution of farmer household income, the profitability of coffee and the value added (profit + labour costs) per FTE.

Benefits to the client

Similar to the cocoa study, insights of this study helped to improve strategy and policy development as well as to inform the Fairtrade Minimum Price (MNP) calculation. We intentionally developed a method that is rigorous, yet sufficiently practical to be scaled up and used as a permanent tool. 

*The customer was working with the Impact Institute under its former name, True Price


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