Gayo Organic Coffee Farmers Association (or PPKGO) is an organic, Fair Trade cooperative located in the Gayo highlands of the Aceh province of Sumatra, Indonesia. The cooperative was founded in 1997, and became Fair Trade certified in March of 2000. The co-op's 1,900 farmers encompass 24 communities, and 20 percent of PPKGO members are women. In a region known for political conflict, the cooperative has achieved relative peace and unity, even among the different ethnic groups that comprise its membership: Gayo (50%), Javanese (30%), Acehnese (15%), Padang (3%) and Batak (2%).
Ensuring Quality and Environmental Sustainability:
Gayo farmers believe in producing a high-quality product from the ground up, taking the ecosystem into account, and using a labor-intensive organic system—effectively pruning, controlling erosion, recycling organic matter, enhancing biodiversity, and protecting songbird habitat. All of PPKGO's coffee is shade grown and certified organic.
Fair Trade Benefits:
With Fair Trade revenues, the cooperative helped to fund a potable water system that now benefits more than 1,500 people in five communities. This project, and others funded by the cooperative, have created over 100 new jobs across Gayo's headquarters, villages, and processing plants. Since PPKGO's first sales to the Fair Trade market, many cooperative members have made upgrades to their homes and farms, and many others have saved enough to build their own homes.
Income Diversification: PPKGO is working with a number of local farmer organizations, NGOs, and entrepreneurs to develop alternative sources of income, including vanilla, patchouli oil, vegetables, rice, tobacco, oranges, potatoes, avocados, and bananas.
Education:With the support of Fair Trade revenues, PPKGO has provided supplemental financing for the construction of two local schools, three schools of Koranic studies for children and young people, and one football field for children.
Here are some links to additional information: