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CERTIFICATION – Combined Fairtrade-4C audits now possible for producers in Central America and Colombia

On 31 March 2015, FLOCERT, the auditing body for Fairtrade, became a 4C approved verifier in Central America and Colombia.

Through this arrangement, coffee producers in these regions that already have or wish to apply for both a Fairtrade certification and a 4C License can combine in one single audit both processes.

Combined audits for other certifications and 4C verification are already possible and are being offered by a number of 4C approved verifiers in different parts of the world.

The new addition of combined Fairtrade-4C audits further opens the opportunity to reduce the burden imposed on coffee producers that must prepare for and undergo several audits. In practical terms, combined audits translate into less efforts and reduced costs for farmers.

The combined audit methodology is an initial step on the road towards increasing collaboration between the 4C Entry-level and Fairtrade certification standards.

A benchmarking project currently underway between the two schemes aims at bringing alignment between the verification and certification criteria of each standards’ production, processing and trade practices.

The results of the benchmarking will be released at the beginning of May 2015. You can read more about this project here.

“The single most important aim of the 4C Association is to support coffee farmers in their sustainability journey. For many of them, the 4C Entry-level standard is just the first step of this journey.

By intensifying our cooperation with Fairtrade, we are paving farmers’ way to comply with certification standards while keeping the costs and efforts as low as possible. ”states Melanie Rutten-Sülz, Executive Director of the 4C Association.

The projects with Fairtrade are another accomplishment in the context of the 4C Association intensifying its collaboration with certification standards.

To find out about the projects and partnerships with other certification standards see COOPERATION section on this website.

To access the full list of 4C approved verifiers, please click here. For further information on verification, please contact: [email protected]