Rainforest Alliance

Rainforest Alliance has a longstanding commitment to creating a world where sustainable farming is a norm, not an exception. Through a refined certification process, Rainforest Alliance has worked with hundreds of producers, NGOs, governments and buyers to address issues such as child labor, low wages and the impact of climate change within the coffee industry. Establishing sustainable coffee as the norm will help address these problems and increase awareness amongst farmers to implement good agricultural practices with heightened respect for the people and planet.

Statement of support

“UTZ has been working towards better farming and a better future for the past 13 years. Through certification we have seen significant impacts in the lives of farmers and their workers, but we have also seen that some of the problems they face cannot be addressed through certification alone. Issues such as child labor, wages or the impact of climate change require a cross sectoral approach. This means that only when UTZ works together with producers, NGOs, governments and buyers, can these issues really be tackled. Building on our experience and reach we are expanding our work to look at how we can join forces with others to make a lasting impact on these sectoral issues in order to create a better future for everyone. We are proud to be part of the sustainable coffee challenge – an important concrete example of a cross sectoral approach making a lasting difference.” Han de Groot, Executive Director

Nonprofit or Institution
Action Networks
Partner Since March 2016

Our Commitments

Rainforest Alliance will improve the Rainforest Alliance Sustainable Agriculture Standard through innovations that: [1] Protect farmers' and workers' rights and wellbeing, specifically enhanced requirements on Shared Responsibility [transparency, investments and incentives for sustainable production in producing origins], Assess & Address [a site-level human rights due diligence system covering child labor, forced labor, discrimination and workplace violence/harassment], and Living Wage [a process to identify and close the gap to paying Living Wages over time], and [2] Conserve nature, specifically enhanced requirements on Regenerative Agriculture [practices to improve soil health, increase biodiversity and reduce pesticide use through Integrated Pest Management] and non-deforestation [to identify areas that have been potentially converted/deforested, supporting deforestation-free supply chains].

Rainforest Alliance will also work to strengthen demand for coffee certified against the Rainforest Alliance Sustainable Agriculture Standard through global market activities - in both importing and exporting countries - including partnering with coffee supply chain actors and supporting the development of consumer engagement campaigns.

In partnership with: Rainforest Alliance partners with producers and supply chain actors globally to reach our target.

Target date 2025
Countries targeted Global

As part of our mission to make sustainable farming the norm, we launch our Sector Partnerships program in Central America to strengthen the capacity of farmers (especially smallholders and female farmers) and local civil society organizations to lobby and advocate for sector change in coffee in their countries. We will support them to work with governments and companies to engage in issues that require a sector wide approach. We will work with the coffee industry, farmers, workers and local NGO’s on advancing the policy agenda with local governments on the topics of: climate change, productivity for farmers, living wage for workers and gender equity in coffee farming communities. We will implement at least one project in Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua on each of these issues with local NGO’s and farmers. We will include the coffee industry in our lobbying and advocacy efforts and will share our learnings with the coffee community at large.

With our Sector Partnerships program, we want to ensure that:

• Smallholder farmers have better access to knowledge, tools and services to increase productivity;

• Farmer groups are strengthened and inclusive with regards to smallholders and women;

• Farmers adopt climate change adaptation practices supported by companies and improved government policies;

• There is progress towards a living wage for workers, and the gap between women and men’s wages is reduced;

• Women have equal opportunities and do not face discrimination or violence in the workplace.


• At least 4 projects total on topics of climate change, productivity for farmers, living wage for workers and gender equity for coffee farming communities implemented by 2020 in Central America

• Results from projects will be shared by farmers, workers and local civil society organizations directly with the broader coffee community on international forums. Including the 60,000 coffee farmers and workers part of the UTZ program in Honduras, Nicaragua and Guatemala

• At least 1 million dollars invested on these projects.

In partnership with: Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs


November 2022

During the course of five years, we spent a total of almost 3 million euros [2999295.37] in Central America on 12 projects – going beyond our original commitment – focusing on gender [2], climate change [3], living wage [1], productivity [5] and farmer organization strengthening [3]. Producer organizations improved their services to coffee producers with the development and piloting of tools to mitigate the impacts of climate change; developed with the input from smallholders. Coffee platforms were set up in Honduras and Nicaragua where coffee stakeholders discuss how to move towards a more sustainable coffee sector. In Honduras, the project supported an organization representing women in coffee to grow both in terms of members as well as recognition by the sector. A living wage benchmark was also released and validated, laying the ground for future projects to increase remuneration in the sector.

January 29, 2018

We have started 9 projects in Central America (4 in Nicaragua, 3 in Guatemala, 2 in Honduras) focused on the following themes: gender (1), climate change (3), productivity (3), farmer organization strengthening (2). We have already released over 900,000 euros (over US$1M) to our partners to start implementing those projects.

Status 99% complete
Target date 2020
Countries targeted Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua