Living in the lingering wake of the Idi Amin regime of terror and intolerance, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Ugandan coffee farmers challenged historical obstacles by forming the “Delicious Peace” Cooperative to build peaceful relationships and economic development. Partnering with a Fair Trade US buyer, the farmers’ standard of living is improving, peace is flourishing, and their messages of peace and fair wages are spreading to their coffee customers in the US.
Delicious Peace Grows In A Ugandan Coffee Bean, narrated by Ed O’Neill, is a 40-minute documentary that tells the story of this group of organic coffee farmers and the inspiration they are providing to consumers of “Delicious Peace” coffee.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKER
Curt Fissel (Director/Director of Photography/Editor) has been Director of Photographer and Editor at JEMGLO Productions for over 15 years. He has been cinematographer, editor and producer of almost 30 documentaries that have garnered him and the productions the Cine Golden Eagle, NATAS nominations, Silver Tellys, and many “best of” awards.
INSPIRED? TAKE ACTION!
- Research before you buy, then buy from farmers who are committed to making a difference in issues they support, such as the farmers in the Delicious Peace Coffee Co-op who are building peaceful relationships through working together in the cooperative. By purchasing their coffee, their goals are funded and furthered. Other co-ops and farmers support different organizations or ideals.
- Budget for spending fair prices on produce and commodities like coffee and cocoa. This will help ensure a decent standard of living for farmers who are working hard to deliver high quality (and often organic) selections. If they are not paid decent wages, they will not be incentivized to continue the hard work involved.
- Buy Fair Trade when purchasing commodities like coffee, chocolate, tea, and vanilla. Governed by international organizations and oversight, Fair Trade will ensure decent wages for farmers producing these items as well as democratic, equality, and community betterment principles in the operations of their small farming businesses.
- Buy organic! The more demand for organic food that is created, the more supply that will be grown. Ensuring that produce and commodities are organic often requires continuing education for farmers on pest-control methods, benefiting them educationally (and ultimately financially) and the planet environmentally.
- Organize a Delicious Peace Party to support Fair Trade. Learn more about hosting a Fair Trade-themed party with these tips and resources.
- Order a DVD for classroom or library use. Ordering information available from The Video Project.
- Do you buy Fair Trade when given the option? If so, why? If not, why not? Do you need additional information about the Fair Trade movement to help you understand the value it offers farmers and their communities, ultimately benefiting consumers?
- How can you bring together people from divergent groups in your community to work together on a project that benefits everyone? What resources are available in your locality to use for this goal?
- Have you ever made a decision that required a big risk but simply “felt right” in terms of what it could accomplish on a macro level? If so, what did you do? How successful was your effort? If not, what holds you back?
- When you walk past a commodity shelf and see products in the same category (such as coffee) with a wide range of prices, do you factor into your buying decision the differences that may have gone into their production and quality, or do you look to buy based solely on price? What kinds of information would you want to have that might alter the way you purchase products at different price points?
- As a consumer of commodities, do you recognize the power you have in terms of making purchases that affect the lives of people who produce the product? How seriously do take the power you have? How seriously do you want to take this power? In what ways can you do that?
JJ Keki, Chairman, Mirembe Kawomera Coffee Cooperative:
“I brought the idea to my fellow friends, Muslims and Christians. I said we should make a co-op of selling our coffee but as well as spreading peace in the world. They were all so happy. So we called it “mirembe,” that means “peace,” and “kawomera,” which means that even our coffee must be of quality. And then we made that cooperative.”
Paul Katzeff, CEO, Thanksgiving Coffee Company:
“Sustainability in coffee grew slowly, from social justice to organic to economic justice. But something was missing. As long as there’s strife in the world, all these things don’t work. They don’t add up to anything because they’re constantly being broken down. What’s needed is peace, the fourth leg to the sustainability model. And that’s what I’ve learned from this project, what I’ve seen in Uganda, and it’s what I intend and have been introducing into the specialty coffee industry. The entire coffee industry has to take on the issue of peace. And what better industry, because coffee comes from all the places where there is poverty and strife.”