We’ve been busy working at FTA Coffee to become Australia’s first certified carbon neutral green coffee provider under the Climate Active platform.
Climate Active is an ongoing partnership between the Australian Government and Australian businesses to drive voluntary climate action. The brand represents Australia’s collective effort to measure, reduce, and offset carbon emissions to lessen our negative impact on the environment. Climate Active’s mandate is to empower Australians & Australian businesses to take climate action, now and for the future.
Working with climate change advisory firm - Ndevr Environmental, our Sustainability Team have been working hard over the past few months to identify, measure, and analyse the carbon footprint of our local operations as well as the coffees we import. The results of this – our carbon inventory – have been independently audited for accuracy and submitted to Climate Active for verification.
We anticipate that within 6 weeks we will receive our accreditation and FTA Coffee will become an accredited Climate Active Organisation, meaning that all our emissions will be reduced or offset to ensure that our operations are carbon neutral. Separately, our coffee portfolio will also be certified carbon neutral under Climate Active to the roastery door.
FTA Coffee will also be offering a dual accreditation on all our coffees, allowing our roaster customers to certify their roasted coffee as carbon neutral to the café door under the Climate Active platform; subject to meeting Climate Active and FTA Coffee requirements. This will allow roasters to sell their product as carbon neutral to their customers and account for their own emissions as part of the coffee value-chain, without having to undergo the laborious task of becoming accredited themselves. Having experienced the challenges of taking on such a project, we made the decision to expand our accreditation to offer this turn-key solution for our customers. Having said that, we would be happy to offer advice to anyone who does wish to go down the accreditation path, so feel free to get in touch if you’d like to have chat.
We are very excited about this as it gives us all an opportunity to work together to contribute to improvements within the coffee industry that we love so much. The funds raised through our purchase of carbon offsets will initially be directed to a range of projects including:
· Rainforest protection in Peru – supporting sustainable coffee & cocoa production.
· Renewable Wind Energy Generation in India.
· Indigenous Fire Management in Australia – this project manages preventative burn offs, which in turn reduce the risk of much bigger more harmful bushfires.
· Human-Induced Regeneration in Australia through “Bringing Bush Back” – these are carbon- farming projects that regenerate & protect native vegetation and reduce soil salinity & erosion.
· Bioenergy Generation in Thailand – diverting sugar cane, rice husk & wood waste from landfill and converting it into electricity.
· Efficient Cookstoves in Malawi & Guatemala – improving both wood-burning stove efficiencies & indoor air quality, resulting in positive community health outcomes & lower carbon emissions. This also reduces the workload on women and children in these communities, contributing to improved educational and economic outcomes.
We’ve selected these projects, not just for their environmental outcomes, but for a range of positive social outcomes – with all projects contributing to a range of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We’ll be using the SDGs as a benchmark for all of our sustainability initiatives to ensure that our actions are making a meaning a contribution to ending poverty, improving health & education, reducing inequality, and improving economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.
We intend to make sustainability initiatives such as these a huge part of the way we do business in the years to come, and do not underestimate how important the contribution of you – our customers to these sustainability initiatives will be, and how much of a difference it will make. Over time our customers might have ideas or projects that have special meaning for them and we are open to your inputs in the years to come, as we continue to make a meaningful contribution to both social and environmental improvements within the coffee value-chain.
Of course, this is merely a first step for us. The next, and more challenging one, is to actively work towards reducing our carbon footprint, as opposed to just offsetting it. Less travel, reducing heating & cooling consumption, working with growers both directly and indirectly to introduce sustainable farming practices, utilising more efficient transportation through the use of biofuels – these are just some of the areas we can & will work on. And we hope our customers will do likewise and join us on this journey.
There is a lot written about the carbon footprint of coffee – some of it based on fact, some based on misinformation. But every little thing we do to reduce our impact on the environment brings us closer to the “holy grail”- the great guilt-free cup of coffee.