The limitations of the fair trade industry have been brought to light since the movement has been consolidated into a definable industry with its own rules and regulations. By creating relationships with coffee farmers in Mount Kenya as business partners rather than mere suppliers, Safi Coffee goes beyond yours typical fair trade model.
The smallholder farmers that Safi works with are paid -- at a minimum -- standard fair trade prices. Furthermore, because farmers are stakeholders in Safi Coffee, they own equity and thus receive company dividends, which translate to increased profits.
Safi Coffee’s three goals as outlined on their website correspond with the triple bottom line. Firstly, Safi aims to sell the best quality product. Secondly, the company aims to provide farmers with direct market access. And last but not least, Safi Coffee conducts business according to environmentally friendly practices.
The company’s social initiatives don’t end at offering fair wages; its partnership with the Kenyan NGO Rural Development Connections allows Safi Coffee to support community development and education for children.
The Swahili word “Safi” roughly translates to "honest, clean and transparent," which are principles that all businesses should aspire to -- whether or not they define themselves as a social business.
Safi Coffee Website
Safi Coffee LLC
220 East 22nd Street, 6S
New York, NY 10010