In the countries where we source coffee, the picture varies hugely in different regions – either because the virus hasn’t yet spread to certain areas, or because of the timings of the coffee harvest. In countries such as Uganda, Costa Rica, El Salvador and Nicaragua the virus hasn’t had too much effect on the main harvest season, which finished before tighter restrictions came in. While it’s still worrying for these suppliers, it does mean that they’ll be paid for their harvest.
But in Brazil, Colombia, Rwanda and Peru, where the harvest is about to start or has just started, and strict measures are in place, the impact on livelihoods could be much greater. Farmers in these countries provide us with some of our best coffees and we work with them on coffee quality and community development initiatives.
Now we are focussed on understanding how we can best support the producers and communities who supply us in the months to come. Continuing to trade responsibly with our suppliers – honouring our contracts and relationships with fair pricing and payment terms is at the core of this, as it continues to sustain the livelihoods of growers now and in the future.
Through Taylors Sourcing Approach we have championed relationships over the years with producers who share our values and commitment to quality. In many places, our joint efforts over recent years to build a more resilient value chain, including the development of projects such as water and healthcare initiatives, will help during these challenging times. We’ll continue to build on this and look for new, meaningful and impactful ways to work with suppliers and others. We will keep you updated on the specific actions we are taking in the weeks and months to come.