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Can Coffee Certification Promote Land-sharing and Protect Forest in Ethiopia?

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  • Mitiku, Fikadu
  • Nyssen, Jan
  • Maertens, Miet

Abstract

We analyze whether private sustainability standards can promote land-sharing between coffee cultivation and forest conservation in southwestern Ethiopia. We compare garden and forest coffee systems, including non-certified and Rainforest Alliance (RA) certified forest coffee, and evaluate yields, productivity and profits. We use original household- and plot-level survey data from 454 households and 758 coffee plots, and ordinary least squares and fixed effects regression models. We find that coffee intensification from semi-forest coffee to garden coffee does not yield any substantial economic benefits in terms of productivity or profit. We find that RA certification increases land and labor productivity and profits of semi-forest coffee production, mainly by guaranteeing farmers a better price and not by improving yields. These findings imply that in southwestern Ethiopia land-sharing between less intensive coffee production and conservation of forest tree species is a viable sustainability strategy from an economic point of view, and that coffee certification is a viable strategy to promote land-sharing and create the economic incentives for farmers to refrain from further coffee intensification.

Suggested Citation

  • Mitiku, Fikadu & Nyssen, Jan & Maertens, Miet, 2017. "Can Coffee Certification Promote Land-sharing and Protect Forest in Ethiopia?," Working Papers 253567, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centre for Agricultural and Food Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:kucawp:253567
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.253567
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Pinto, Luís Fernando Guedes & Gardner, Toby & McDermott, Constance L. & Ayub, Karim Omar Lara, 2014. "Group certification supports an increase in the diversity of sustainable agriculture network–rainforest alliance certified coffee producers in Brazil," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 59-64.
    3. Takahashi, Ryo & Todo, Yasuyuki, 2013. "Impact of a Shade Coffee Certification Program on Forest Conservation:A Case Study from a Wild Coffee Forest in Ethiopia," Working Papers 55, JICA Research Institute.
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    7. Riera, Olivia & Swinnen, Johan, 2016. "Household level spillover effects from biofuels: Evidence from castor in Ethiopia," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 55-65.
    8. Fikadu Mitiku & Yann De Mey & Jan Nyssen & Miet Maertens, 2017. "Do Private Sustainability Standards Contribute to Income Growth and Poverty Alleviation? A Comparison of Different Coffee Certification Schemes in Ethiopia," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 9(2), pages 1-21, February.
    9. Mitiku, Fikadu & de Mey, Yann & Nyssen, Jan & Maertens, Miet, 2017. "Do Private Sustainability Standards Contribute to Poverty Alleviation? A Comparison of Different Coffee Certification Schemes in Ethiopia," Working Papers 253589, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centre for Agricultural and Food Economics.
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    Cited by:

    1. Yotsaphat Kittichotsatsawat & Varattaya Jangkrajarng & Korrakot Yaibuathet Tippayawong, 2021. "Enhancing Coffee Supply Chain towards Sustainable Growth with Big Data and Modern Agricultural Technologies," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 13(8), pages 1-20, April.

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    Keywords

    Agricultural and Food Policy; Environmental Economics and Policy; Land Economics/Use; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;
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