European Coffee Federation expresses its concern of the new EU Deforestation Law

European Coffee Federation expresses its concern of the new EU Deforestation Law

February 27 - 2024

Coffee Geography Magazine

ECF announces its concern to the EU in its statement: ““The implementation and the timeframe are proving to be a challenge not only for the entire coffee sector and related stakeholders, but also for the EU competent authorities. The ECF and its members remain fully committed to the spirit of the EUDR and will continue to work to ensure that the overall objective set out by the European Commission is met by all, when the time is right, without the numerous unintended consequences.” 

The mounting confusion from all sides which are in the coffee industry as the time is approaching to enact the new law banning the import of major commodities, primarily coffee, linked to deforestation is the apprehension for the European Coffee Federation in its statement. In new law requires companies to be able to trace their origins to prove they weren’t grown on newly deforested land. The European Coffee Federation is pressuring the EU to delay the implementation of the law due to “a potentially devastating impact on millions of growers.”

Others international organizations which express their concern on the new regulation are Conservation International and Solidaridad, against the implementation of the deforestation measure and how it will negatively impact smallholder coffee farmers.

Once the regulation goes into effect, it forces the warehouses in the EU to destroy green coffee stocks that do not comply in the sourcing process. Once the law enacts on December 30th as planned, not only traders in EU would be affected but also smallholder coffee farmers and cooperatives in poor countries face challenges to meet the criteria without detail provision and managing body to guide them how to comply.

Europe accounted for 32% of global coffee consumption, amounting to an estimated 3,252 thousand tons of coffee which makes Europe the largest coffee market in the world. As the world’s largest coffee market, Europe is also the world’s largest green coffee importer. 

The European market is also dominated by large multinational roasting and grinding companies, namely Nestlé (Switzerland), JDE Peet’s (the Netherlands), Melitta (Germany) and Lavazza (Italy), as well as Starbucks (United States) and Strauss Coffee (Israel) where the world’s top 10 roasters roast about 35% of the world’s coffee. 

Italy has the largest coffee-roasting industry in Europe, with a sold production volume of 595 thousand tones of non-decaffeinated roasted coffee. Germany has Europe’s second-largest coffee-roasting industry, with a sold roasted coffee production volume of 555 thousand tones. The Italian and German roasting industries are followed by France, the Netherlands, Spain and Sweden. 

Europe is the world’s largest exporter of roasted and ground coffee. Europe accounted for about 85% of the total global volume of roasted coffee (excluding decaffeinated) exports, amounting to an estimated 1.1 million tones.