What is shadegrown?

Over the years, we have always been conscious of the coffees we choose with respect to sustainability. We have 24 Shadegrown coffees and 12 of these are Fairtrade Organic Certified coffees.

Coffee is grown in the tropics, and often biodiverse equatorial rainforests are cut down to make way for high yield coffee plantations or even for growing the cash crop chat, as in Ethiopia.

However, Shadegrown means the coffee trees are planted under an indigenous or mixed forest canopy. This provides natural habitat and food for local wildlife as well as a vital haven for migratory birds. Traditionally in Ethiopia, seedlings are transplanted to the forests along with a taller companion tree seedling to maintain the integrity of forest canopy for the coffee trees.

These sustainable coffee crops protect a biodiverse environment and are often the sole source of cash income for the indigenous populations that produce them. In PNG, these shade grown coffee trees are protected with gusto by the local village coffee growers. Here, much coffee grows wild in the forest and is nurtured as Certified Organic. An errant producer, who dared to violate this rigour by introducing artificial fertilizer to the forest grown coffee, found he was rejected from the community for 7 years, along with his use of the forest for his coffee.

With habitat destruction ravaging equatorial rainforests, intelligent coffee producers are now planning for a sustainable future by planting coffee trees under an indigenous forest canopy cover. In Sidamo Ethiopia, heirloom and disease resistant varietals, are replanted into the forests from where they came as mature fruiting trees. With the leaf litter from the forests, the soil is enriched with humus and vital water retention to help the bacteria and soil flora invigorate soil health, which in turn, regenerates the economic cycle of harvesting the forest. Healthy Shadegrown coffee trees at Copan, Honduras, ensures farmers of sustainable production of their Organic coffee crop.

Jasper Coffee consciously chooses to increase the number of shadegrown coffees that we offer. Look for our ‘tree symbol’ for Shade Grown coffees or see our full product list for the whole range.