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Industry Insight

Rainforest Alliance Turns 25

Last week,

By Richard Romano
Published: May 31, 2012

Last week, the Rainforest Alliance turned 25 years old, whilst its certification program turned 23. Over at Green Biz, the Alliance itself asks: what good has its certification program done?
Forty-two percent of U.S. consumers, for instance, now recognize the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal. Major global companies now source Rainforest Alliance Certified products, resulting in significant market shares for these products, including 3.3 percent of coffee, 15 percent of bananas and 9.4 percent of tea -- up from 0 percent just five years ago.
Stakeholder groups met in New York to share some of the tangible and quantifiable results of the Rainforest Alliance’s certification program, and while there is much to celebrate, one surprising theme that emerged was that of “uncommon collaboration.” That is, competitors joining together to pursue a common goal, and uniting disparate and previously unconnected individuals and businesses. Not that everyone is gong to hold hands and start singing “Kumbayah,” but reading some of the stories of these uncommon collaboration shows how we can work together for the common good.
"The 20th century was about hyperconsumption," [Collaborative consumption expert Roo Rogers] told the New York meeting. "The 21st century will be about collaborative consumption."
We can only hope.

Please offer your feedback to Richard. He can be reached at richard@whattheythink.com.



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