the quality of coffee beans

Alongside price, the quality of coffee beans had also suffered. The coffee crisis had been fueled by an overflow of cheap, sun-loving, easy-to-grow Robusta beans from chemically fertilized plantations in Brazil and Vietnam. Brazil replaced some of its high quality, mountain-grown, hand-farmed Arabica coffee for cheaper, less flavorful Robusta that could be harvested by machines. Meanwhile, good coffee was becoming a rare commodity due to the hit that farmers incomes were taking. Part of what allowed the quality to deteriorate was the fact that U.S. import guidelines stated that only 75% of raw, imported coffee consisted of beans. In other words, up to 25% could be triagespoiled beans, sticks and rocks usually filtered out during the roasting process. Fair Trade Movement Definition: According to FLOs website, the most widely recognized defmition of Fair Trade was created by FINE, an informal association of the four main Fair Trade networks (Fairtrade Labelling Organizations Intemational, International Fair Trade Association, Network of European World shops, and European Fair Trade Association): Fairtrade is a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers especially in the South. Fairtrade organizations (backed by consumers) are engaged actively in supporting producers, awareness raising and in campaigning for changes in the rules and practice of conventional international trade. Based on its definition, Fair Trade had three strategic intents: r to work with marginalized producers and workers in order to help them move from a position of vulnerability to security and economic self-sufficiency; i. to empower producers and workers as stakeholders in their own organizations; J. To actively play a wider role in the global arena to achieve greater equity he international trade. Mainstreaming Challenges While many in the coffee trade believed that Fair Trade coffee should stay within its niche market where the coffee should stay within its niche market where the brand would be better protected, others believed that the long-term sustainability of Fair Trade coffee hinged on its ability to access larger markets. As a development economist pointed out, If you count on everyone to [buy Fair Trade] because of their ideological commitments, youre going to be stuck in a niche market that doesnt serve a broad range of people. But mainstreaming would mean overcoming some significant challenges. One of the biggest challenges in mainstreaming the sale of Fair Trade coffee came down to educating the consumer on the specifics of Fair Trade coffee. The coffee aisle in a typical supermarket was stocked with many different types of niche coffees Bird Friendly, Shade Grown, Organic, Rain Forest Alliance Certified, Sustainable, Fairly Tradedall of which espoused similar missions and offered few details. Even Starbucks which had sold Fair Trade certified coffee since 2002 was adding to the confusion. As of 2008, the company was no longer selling Fair Trade certified coffee but was marketing all of its coffee as fairly traded. When asked what fairly traded meant, a Starbucks employee simply replied: We pay our growers a fair price. But should price be the most important element stressed in trying to mainstream Fair Trade coffee? As industry insider attempting to help farmers improve the quality of their coffee noted, It isnt just about paying more for coffee. It is looking at the quality of what youre buying, how youre increasing consumption, and how youre increasing excitement about coffee. I dont believe that simply funding programs at origin without taking into consideration promotion to consumers will be the answer. There has to be a considerable effort made to educate consumers at the real retail level about high-quality coffees. Questions: Apply the Hard Systems Method to this Situation case, including spry diagram and conceptual mapping There has to be a considerable effort made to educate consumers at the real retail level about high-quality coffees. Questions: Apply the Hard Systems Method to this Situation case, including spry diagram and conceptual mapping in order to brainstorm, analyse and make suitable recommendations. Provide a detailed narrative explaining your thinking process. (1500 words) (50 marks) Q2. Investigate further suitable approaches and tools that could be used to investigate, illustrate and make recommendation to solving problems. Please consult all your course materials and undertake relevant literature search. (400 words) (20 marks) Q3. What are the main insights or new understandings that you gained from the application of HSM to the case study? (400 words) (20 marks) Q4. Review the relevance and suitability of hard or soft approach in highlighting issues faced by it. (400 words) (10 marks) End of Questions 6

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