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Confronting the Coffee Crisis – Fair Trade, Sustainable Livelihoods and Ecosystems in Mexico and Central America - MIT Press Scholarship Online
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Confronting the Coffee Crisis: Fair Trade, Sustainable Livelihoods and Ecosystems in Mexico and Central America

Christopher M Bacon, V. Ernesto Mendez, Stephen R Gliessman, David Goodman, and Jonathan A Fox


Our morning cups of coffee connect us to a global industry and, also, to an export crisis in the tropics that is destroying livelihoods, undermining the cohesion of families and communities, and threatening ecosystems. This book explores the crisis facing small-scale coffee farmers of Mexico and Central America, the political economy of the global coffee industry, the coffee producers’ response to this crisis, and the initiatives that claim to promote more sustainable rural development among coffee-producing communities. The contributors review the historical, political, economic, and agroecol ... More

Keywords: export crisis, family cohesion, small-scale farming, Mexico, Central America, biodiversity, eco-labeling, organic coffee, shade-grown coffee, Fair Trade

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780262026338
Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013 DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262026338.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Christopher M Bacon, editor

V. Ernesto Mendez, editor

Stephen R Gliessman, editor

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I Context and Analytical Framework

3 The Roots of the Coffee Crisis

Seth Petchers, and Shayna Harris

II Ecological and Social Dimensions of Producers’ Responses

III Alternative South-North Networks and Markets

10 Social Dimensions of Organic Coffee Production in Mexico: Lessons for Eco-Labeling Initiatives

David B. Bray, José Luis Plaza Sanchez, and Ellen Contreras Murphy

14 Cultivating Sustainable Coffee: Persistent Paradoxes

Christopher M. Bacon, V. Ernesto Méndez, and Jonathan A. Fox