An app has been developed that enables consumers to ‘tip’ the Colombian coffee farmers who produced their coffee in a traceable, transparent, secure way.
The tips are used to boost pension funds, support female farmers, and provide education for their children.
The tipping and traceability platform is called ‘propina,’ which means ‘tip’ in Spanish. It actually consists of two apps, ‘propina Business’ for corporate partners, and ‘propina Tip Your Farmer’ for consumers.
propina Business allows consumers to send tips when purchasing coffee. The tips will directly fund a pension for the farmer, administered by the state-funded institution Colpensiones. The tip is traceable and transparent, so consumers can be confident that their money is supporting the person that grew their coffee. Supply chain traceability technology confirms the origin of the coffee. propina uses spectrometry, GPS and cloud technology to trace the coffee from seed to cup.
propina Tip Your Farmer allows consumers to send tips from anywhere, receive photos and video directly from the farm, trace the origin of their coffee and communicate directly with their coffee farmers. When tips are not directly linked to a farm, the funds will be sent to a general fund designed to support female coffee farmers in the Associación de Mujeres Caficultoras del Cauca (AMUCC), as well as to a school set up for the thousands of children of coffee farmers.
The propina team partnered with technology incubator TECNiCAFÉ, in Colombia and Supracafé in Madrid, Spain to support the initiatives focusing on women and children in the coffee sector.
The team also plans to begin piloting propina Credit, which will extend loans to farmers on the platform, providing economic viability and a sustainable future. The goal is to provide development capital and savings to farmers in Colombia and other coffee producing countries around the world through the propina platform.
Crawford Hawkins, founder and CEO of propina, said, “Inequalities are pervasive in the global coffee market. But with propina, consumers can send a tip directly to the farm, a tip that will not be squandered and will grow like a coffee tree for the farmer and his family in the form of a pension. The cornerstone of the platform is traceability. We trace the tip, the coffee and the communication between farmer and consumer.”