images.jpgCerulean Warbler Conservation Coffee, a shade grown coffee from central Columbia, is now being offered for sale through a partnership between Thanksgiving Coffee Co and the American Bird Conservatory. It’s perhaps the latest in a growing trend of environmentally friendly premium coffee. The plantations growing this coffee are designed to preserve a suitable habitat for the Cerulean Warbler and other songbirds (as well as other little critters!). The price is $10.50 per 12 oz, and is available here. (via Surfbirds; read the rest of this entry for the entire press release)

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New Coffee Helps Rare Songbird

American Bird Conservancy Launches Shade Grown Coffee to Protect Cerulean Warblers

(Washington, D.C. January 22) American Bird Conservancy (ABC) is pleased to announce that Cerulean Warbler Conservation Coffee is now available for sale to the public. Cerulean Warbler Conservation Coffee is shade grown coffee from plantations in Central Colombia that the Cerulean Warbler – a declining songbird that nests in North America – depends on during the winter. Proceeds from the coffee sales will be used to maintain the shade plantations and an adjacent Cerulean Warbler forest reserve.

“By purchasing this premium coffee today, you are helping traditional coffee cooperatives maintain shade plantations, and preserving habitat for the Cerulean Warbler and other migratory songbirds,” said George Fenwick, President of American Bird Conservancy.

Shade grown coffee plantations are at risk of being converted to sun coffee and other cash crops, resulting in a loss of forest cover and bird habitat. The loss of these plantations is cited as a reason for the bird’s decline.

“This is the best Colombian coffee I have tasted, and I have been roasting coffee since 1969,”said Paul Katzeff, roastmaster for Thanksgiving Coffee. “The flavor is deeply blessed with heavy body, silky smooth notes of cashew and apricot, and has a long fruity finish. If you like coffee ice cream, you will love this classic Colombian coffee.”

ABC has teamed up with its Colombian partner, Fundacion ProAves, local growers’ cooperative COOPERAN, American Birding Association, and the Thanksgiving Coffee Company to bring this high-quality, shade grown and organic coffee to market. Cerulean Warbler Conservation Coffee can be ordered from www.abcbirds.org or by calling 800-648-6491.

“We at ABA have long been involved in the shade grown coffee market with Thanksgiving Coffee and are pleased to now have the opportunity to also work with ABC, Fundacion ProAves, and COOPERAN in a meaningful effort to protect Cerulean Warbler and other songbird habitat in Colombia. Maintaining shade plantations and the forest reserve may be our last real chance to reverse the negative population trends among these birds,” said Richard Payne, President of the American Birding Association.

“The Cerulean Warbler is North America’s fastest declining neotropical migratory songbird – loss and fragmentation of its wintering habitat is a major reason why its population is down 80% since 1966,” said Fenwick. “ABC is working to reverse this trend by bringing shade grown coffee benefiting birds and local communities to market and by raising funds to conserve the warbler across its range.”