Manizales, Colombia, October 3, 2011 -- In response to a growing demand for strengthened capacity in price risk management for the coffee industry, the World Bank’s Agricultural Risk Management Team, working in collaboration with Fair Trade USA, will provide training in this area to the Colombian Fair Trade coffee sector. The training will benefit 37 producer cooperatives which represent thousands of Colombian coffee growers in this area of the country.
Coffee is a very important source of income and employment to Colombia’s rural population. Half a million rural households in the country are involved in coffee growing, primarily on small scale farms of less than five hectares. Colombia has led the way in developing a Fair Trade coffee sector with a growing number of Fair Trade coffee cooperatives working to improve the livelihoods of their members through improved marketing and pricing of their coffee. Fair Trade USA is the leading third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the United States and works with farmer cooperatives to provide training and resources to grow their businesses.
The Coffee Price Risk Management course, funded by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), an agency of the Government of Switzerland, will be held October 3-5 in Manizales. All Fair Trade Certified coffee cooperatives from the North of Colombia participate. This activity is part of the support provided by the World Bank to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in the area of agriculture risk management.
“Fair Trade USA believes that partnerships like this one increase the impact and benefits to coffee farmers, their families, and their communities. We are pleased to be cooperating with the World Bank on this initiative," said Paul Rice, President & CEO, Fair Trade USA.
The course aims to help participants better understand and quantify price risk and acquire the knowledge and tools required to better manage the effects of volatile prices. It is designed to inform coffee market participants (fair-trade cooperatives exporting coffee globally) about the risk of unmanaged price exposure and the means for managing it. The training in risk assessment and physical risk management strategies will provide participants with the tools to better manage price risk by improving their understanding of the causes of price risk exposure and how to mitigate such risk.
"The financial support provided by the Swiss Government’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs will make it possible for us to transfer knowledge on price risk management to the Colombian fair trade coffee sector in partnership with Fair Trade USA. We hope that the training will assist the course participants in better managing the price risk exposure that they face," said Marc Sadler, Team Leader, World Bank, Agricultural Risk Management Team.
Training materials are based on the experience gained by the World Bank and its partners through its activities in the area of price risk management.
World Bank Washington: Stevan Jackson, +1 (202) 458 5054 firstname.lastname@example.org 
Fair Trade USA: Stacy Geagan Wagner, +1 510 844-1405 , email@example.com 
World Bank Colombia: Maria Clara Ucros, + 57-1-3263600, firstname.lastname@example.org 
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