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The Impact of Coffee Certification on the Economic Performance of Indonesian Actors

The prevailing assumption among consumers in the North is that buying certified coffee contributes positively to the economic performance of Southern actors, particularly smallholder farmers. In this paper we examine the impact of coffee certification on the economic performance of Indonesian actors (farmers, traders, exporters, and Indonesian roasters) and analyze how economic rent is distributed among them. Questionnaire results and in-depth interviews revealed that all Indonesian actors benefit financially from certification on a price per kilogram measurement, but the differences between certified and non-certified actors are small. The paper finds that the economic rent from certification is distributed very unequally along the coffee value chain where roasters receive 95.46 percent (Robusta) and 83.66 percent (Arabica) of the total economic rent (retailers excluded). Overall, farmers enjoy a small direct benefit from certification in the form of a higher price per kilogram for their coffee, and possible benefits regarding increased productivity and quality resulting from training and advice in crop management.

Vol. 12 No. 2, December 2015

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