Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Free Pass Redux

Uh oh, now Starbucks has been accused of exploiting Third World farmers.


Satanic Mechanic said...

Starbucks is trying to stop Ethiopia from trademarking three types of coffee beans. That is funny, considering coffee was invented in Ethiopia. A friend of mine is from Ethiopia, I have tried the Ethiopian coffee and it is pretty good.

Paul E. Zimmerman said...

I guess Oxfam assumes the market for "fair trade" coffee really is large enough that poorer countries like Ethiopia can go ahead and deliberately drive up the price of their coffee beans in ways like this. But it isn't, and the consequences will be bad for those farmers Oxfam et al. believe themselves to be protecting when consumers select cheaper alternatives.