Cup of Excellence auction proceeds passed the US$40 million mark at the 90th CoE auction, the Brazil Late Harvest 2014.
The Cup of Excellence programme, which began in 1999, has consistently rewarded farmers for the high quality coffees they produce despite ebbs and flows in the coffee market over the last 15 years.
It is estimated that the impact of Cup of Excellence is many times larger than the actual auction proceeds once increased premiums for additional coffees from winning farms, micro-regions and increased overall quality are factored in. Approximately 83 per cent of total auction proceeds go directly to farmers and 17 per cent go to country organizers to offset the cost of the competition.
“The impact from the Cup of Excellence programme has been huge,” said Susie Spindler, Executive Director of Alliance for Coffee Excellence and Co-Founder of Cup of Excellence.
“Not only does the programme raise the level of quality and information available to the roasters from individual farms, it has created a structure of transparency that was unknown in the industry prior to the auctions.
“The focus on making sure that top quality is rewarded financially has, in several countries, burst the price ceiling that most small farmers operated under for hundreds of years, and has helped to empower coffee farmers to become more entrepreneurial.”
The Cup of Excellence will hold 10 more competitions in 10 countries through 2014, ending the year with its 100th competition in Brazil, coincidently home of the first Cup of Excellence competition.