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Transparency

transparency-report

OUR COFFEE PRICES 2021

At Calendar, our definition of quality coffee has evolved over time. We believe it’s more complex than simply how it tastes. For us, having a connection with the farm, knowing how the coffee was produced, and what price the producer was paid, all contribute to quality. With that in mind, we’ve decided to produce our first transparency report for the coffees we purchased in 2021. This report focuses on our buying history with each producer, the volumes we purchased, and the prices that were paid throughout the supply chain. 

We currently buy all our coffee through importers and have yet to visit any of the farms we buy from. Without working directly with producers and understanding their costs of production, we can't guarantee we are paying sustainable prices for our coffee. What we can do is commit to being transparent about the prices we pay, and request our suppliers do the same. 

WHY TRANSPARENCY?

Greater transparency around coffee prices is good for the entire industry. Green coffee buyers will see what others are paying for similar lots, and consumers will know exactly how much farmers receive. Producers will also have a better understanding of what their coffees are worth. Publishing our coffee prices does not guarantee the producer was paid a fair price, but we do believe transparency around this information is crucial to building a more equitable future for our industry.


GLOSSARY OF TERMS

Farmer refers to someone who grows and sells coffee as whole cherries
Producer is a farmer, cooperative or washing station that sells coffee processed, dried, and packaged down to ‘parchment’ stage. In some cases, the producer also mills and exports their coffee.
Purchase history displays the number of years we’ve been buying from each producer.
Cup scores are a quality rating based on our assessment of the coffee after arriving in Europe.
Price we paid is the amount paid to our importers in USD/lb. This excludes delivery charges and extended warehousing costs.
FOB (“free on board”) is the price paid to the exporter for coffee that’s ready to ship. This includes the producer price, logistical costs and exporting fees. This figure displays how much of the purchase price is returned to the country of origin, but tells us very little about how much the farmer or producer received.
Farmer/Producer Price indicates the price that the farmer or producer received for their coffee. This price varies depending on whether whole coffee cherries, parchment, or fully milled green coffee was sold.

DIFFICULTIES OF TRANSPARENCY

We faced a number of challenges while compiling the data for this report. Besides the various weight and currency conversions, coffee is valued differently depending on whether a producer is selling whole coffee cherries, parchment, or fully milled green coffee. Each step in processing and milling adds value to the coffee and is reflected in the price. In our report, you’ll see that farmers in Ethiopia and Rwanda sold whole cherries to their local washing station, which is why the price paid was much lower for these coffees. These discrepancies make transparency even more complex, and demonstrate why pricing alone isn’t useful. When analysing these figures, it’s important to take into account the context and anything else that might have influenced the price.

KEY PURCHASING STATS FOR 2021:

  • We imported 27,643 kg of green coffee
  • We purchased from 28 producers across 10 countries
  • We obtained the FOB price for 25 out of 28 coffees, achieving FOB price transparency on 94% of our total volume purchased
  • We obtained the Farmer/Producer price for 20 out of 28 coffees, achieving Farmer/Producer price transparency on 79% of our total volume purchased

SPECIALITY COFFEE TRANSACTION GUIDE & THE PLEDGE

 
When it comes to price transparency, the Specialty Coffee Transaction Guide and the Pledge are two valuable sources of information. Both exist to increase the prices paid to farmers and provide living incomes in coffee-producing countries. They compile data from producers, exporters, importers and roasters, in order to establish new benchmarks for what we should be paying for quality coffee. By contributing our data to the Specialty Coffee Transaction Guide and signing the Pledge, we’ve joined a growing number of international coffee roasters who are embracing transparency and empowering everyone in the supply chain to make informed choices. We encourage you to visit both of their websites to find a full list of roasters, importers, and exporters who are also sharing their prices.