Support Fair Trade by drinking (really) good coffee



    Van Houtte Coffee and Calgary Co-op team up to raise funds and awareness
    for Peruvian Fair Trade coffee cooperative

    CALGARY, Feb. 15 /CNW/ - When you buy a fresh cup of coffee at any
Calgary Co-op today, your money goes directly to COCLA, a coffee cooperative
in Peru that supplies Fair Trade coffee beans to the Van Houtte Coffee
Company. To celebrate their new fresh coffee program called, "Good Coffee,
Fair Trade", Calgary Co-op is donating all proceeds from the sales of hot
beverages on Friday, February 15 to the cooperative organization. Van Houtte,
a TransFair Certified coffee company, is supplying the coffee for the event.
    "I hope that our program inspires other retailers to get involved with
Fair Trade co-operatives," said Donna Burn, Vice President of Member and
Public Relations for Calgary Co-op. "We've had such a terrific response from
our customers for our efforts and the coffee itself is outstanding."
    In the summer of 2007, Calgary Co-op implemented a Van Houtte Fair Trade
coffee program in all of its 26 convenience stores and 22 grocery stores. The
collaboration has been a great way for both organizations to raise awareness
about organizations like COCLA. The COCLA cooperative uses revenue from Fair
Trade sales to invest in sustainable agriculture, quality improvement and in
the health and education of their workers.
    "We believe that investing in the lives of our coffee producers
ultimately produces better coffee," said Joseph Audi, director of marketing
for Van Houtte. Fair Trade certified coffees are purchased through direct
trade from cooperatives (co-ops) or small coffee farmers at a price that
reflects a living wage and under trading conditions that are sustainable for
producers as well as buyers.
    Increased profits generated from Fair Trade coffee sales are often used
to build or improve processing facilities. The stable price and credit that
these coffee farmers receive help them maintain and improve the quality of
their coffee.
    Coffee co-ops participating in the Fair Trade movement often offer
scholarships for the children of producers so they can learn about the
technical side of coffee production and improve the quality and efficiency of
their family farms. In communities with very few economic options, Fair Trade
offers a viable alternative to growing coca, which is of lesser benefit to the
members and producers.
    The Fair Trade model improves social and environmental standards for the
people involved in the production of coffee by offering better trading
conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers.
The fundamental benefit of this model is really about improving the quality of
life for coffee farmers.

    About Van Houtte Coffee Company

    Since 1919, Van Houtte has been producing superior-tasting coffees using
traditional European small-batch roasting methods. Our long-standing
dedication to European-style quality and tradition is reflected in our company
signature: A taste of Europe in your cup. It expresses our commitment to the
highest standards of excellence in all aspects of our business.
    Today, we are one of North America's leading gourmet coffee companies
involved in nearly every aspect of the industry. We select and buy our beans,
roast and package our coffees, manufacture state-of-the-art single-cup brewing
equipment, and market a wide range of unique products to retail, office, café
and online customers.

    About Calgary Co-op

    Locally owned and operated, Calgary Co-op is one of the largest retail
co-operatives in North America, with 425,350 members, 4,000 employees,
$352 million in assets and annual sales approaching $1 billion. Calgary Co-op
has 22 retail shopping centres, 22 in-store pharmacies, 26 gas bars, 9 travel
offices and 15 liquor stores located in Calgary, Airdrie, Strathmore, and
Okotoks, Alberta.
    The continuing development of Calgary Co-op is a priority for its board
of directors, management and employees. Guided by a comprehensive vision and
strategic direction, Calgary Co-op has a dynamic three-year development and
enhancement plan that will see existing stores renovated and new centres built
in emerging markets.





For further information:

For further information: Kyra Aylsworth, (416) 515-7517 ext. 227,
aylsworth@thornleyfallis.com; Michael O'Connor Clarke, (416) 515-7517 ext.
245, mocc@thornleyfallis.com

Organization Profile

VAN HOUTTE INC.

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