High quality coffee grows in very specific conditions. Climate change is disrupting these conditions, causing temperature and precipitation fluctuations in the tropical areas where coffee is grown. Mitigating carbon emissions will help in the long-term, but farmers need immediate help to adapt their practices to changes that are happening now.
In 2013, Counter Culture partnered with a professor and a group of Masters students from the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University to study the impact of climate change and potential adaptation strategies for coffee farmers. In the summer of 2014, students went to three co-ops we work with: CODECH in Guatemala, ASORGANICA in Colombia, and CENFROCAFE in Peru. Using qualitative research methodology to gather information from farmers, co-op leaders, technical experts, and government leaders, the students researched the effects of climate change in those areas and recommended adaptation strategies. In 2015, a new group of students returned to CODECH and CENFROCAFE to study the feasibility of implementing three of those strategies. With research now complete, we’re working with the co-ops to implement the most feasible strategies as well as refining the research methodology so we can repeat this process with all of our producer partners.