Starbucks has pledged to make sure that all its espresso coffee sold in the UK and Ireland is Fairtrade certified by the end of next year.
Starbucks espresso-based coffees include cappuccinos and caffe lattes and the UK and Ireland agreement is part of a broader commitment by Starbucks, which the company claims will make it the largest purchaser of Fairtrade coffee in the world during 2009.
The coffee shop chain said that, as part of its Fairtrade commitment, it would double its annual volume of certified coffee next year to 18.1m kg.
At a launch event today with the Fairtrade Foundation, Starbucks chief executive Howard Shultz said the announcement marked an important milestone in the company's commitment to ethical sourcing and support for coffee farmers and their communities.
Harriet Lamb, executive director of the Fairtrade Foundation UK, added: "The partnership between Fairtrade and Starbucks is good news for farmers, good news for coffee lovers and a wake up call to the wider coffee industry."
By Chris Druce
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