UTZ Certified Coffee

Individuals looking for organic coffee may run across the UTZ Certified label. This label says that the bag of coffee you are buying came from a coffee farm that employed sustainable agricultural practices, good environmental practices and efficient farm management. A key feature of the UTZ Certified label is that UTZ Certified coffee is traced from grower to roaster. UTZ certified coffee is sold in North America, Europe, and Japan, in nearly fifty nations. According to UTZ,

UTZ Certified stands for sustainable farming and better opportunities for farmers, their families and our planet. The UTZ program enables farmers to learn better farming methods, improve working conditions and take better care of their children and the environment. Through the UTZ-program farmers grow better crops, generate more income and create better opportunities while safeguarding the environment and securing the earth’s natural resources.

Tough Requirements, Gradual Implementation, and Close Tracking

The long term goals of UTZ are good agricultural practices, safe and healthy working conditions, abolishment of child labor, and environmental protection. However, a grower does not need to accomplish all that is required in the first year. This allows a grower to sign up to get his coffee UTZ certified, learn what is necessary, and grow into the long term requirements of the program. Because of the close tracking feature of all UTZ Certified products, consumers of healthy organic coffee produced by these growers can be assured of product quality as well as the farming practices that brought it to market.

What UTZ Teaches and Requires

A UTZ grower learns to do the following and then continues to do what is needed.

  • Reduce and prevent soil erosion
  • Keep records of fertilizer and chemical use and use these products responsibly
  • Follow good farming practices including integrated pest management
  • Avoid deforestation
  • Protect water sources, native and endangered species
  • Use native fauna for shade grown coffee
  • Train workers properly in their own language
  • Implement and follow through on health and safety requirements
  • Teach and require good hygiene
  • Trace coffee from planting to roaster
  • Carry out internal inspections every year

Is UTZ Certified Organic Coffee?

A UTZ Certified grower does not necessarily get approval from the US Department of Agriculture for organic coffee certification. In doing so he avoids the cost of another certification. However, many organic growers go with UTZ Certified instead of organic certification. They do this because of the wider range of benefits of working with UTZ and the wider range of benefits that UTZ Certified enjoys. In short, UTZ Certified coffee is typically organic coffee with healthy organic coffee antioxidants and a minimum of impurities. As with all coffees UTZ Certified coffees contain the useful ingredients which reduce the risk of Type II diabetes as well as several types of cancer. UTZ coffees are grown according to standardized and high level practices and result in high quality coffee. And, when you drink good coffee that is UTZ Certified you can trace it back to a valley in the mountains of Colombia, Panama, or Brazil where a family is living a better life by working with UTZ to bring you a great cup of coffee.

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