B-Corp & Coffee: To B or not to B

Why we do not believe in certification but just became B-Corp certified coffee company

Wakuli does not buy certified coffee. We build direct relationships, putting farmers in the lead. We stimulate production of high quality, sustainably grown coffee and buy it for a higher price. We are an impact first coffee company, aiming to always keep improving. Traditional, unwieldy certification schemes have no role to play in our approach to changing the industry. So why should we make an exception and get B-Corp certified? 

Certify ourselves instead of the coffee farmers

Certification is based on distrust and a built-in need for constant verification. Certification does not put farmers in control of their own production and price but instead makes them dependent on the verdict of “third party auditors”. 

Coffee farmers are - even after all these decades and with all the labels out there - still at the mercy of a handful of giant coffee companies who make nice with these labels on their packaging while shifting responsibility to producers. Farmers are left with the investment as well as the risk of not getting their product sold as Fairtrade or Rainforest Alliance and missing out on the promised premiums.  

With B-Corp on the other hand, we scrutinize our own operations based on the elaborate B Assessment. It is different from other certifications because with B-Corp we put the burden of proof as well as the financial risk squarely on ourselves. That is why we decided to become a B-Corp certified coffee company.

B-Corp and onwards!

The assessment provides a roadmap for our social and environmental sustainability because: you are never done. We will keep improving. And so will B-Corp. We look forward to the next version of the certification when a B-Corp (company) will need to meet the threshold on all themes (climate, living income, governance etc). This will make it impossible for companies (in coffee or not) to avoid accountability for their handling of their value chains in developing countries because they score high on their employee policy in the factory or head office in Switzerland. 

All in all, we are convinced our B-Corp certification contributes to confidence and trust in our way of working for existing and future Wakuli customers so we can keep growing and bring more specialty coffee to even more conscious consumers. In that way, our B-Corp certification will benefit our long term partners in coffee producing countries instead of the other way around. That is why we made an exception to our rule. 

If you are interested to know how we approach the most important topics, feel free to reach out: coffee@wakuli.com

B-Corp & Coffee: To B or not to B