Weekend Reading: Mark Pendergrast’s Fair Trade
Mark Pendergrast: Beyond Fair Trade: How One Small Coffee Company Helped Transform a Hillside Village in Thailand. Greystone Books, 2015.
Mark Pendergrast is the author of the definitive history of Coca-Cola, For God, Love, and Coca-Cola, about which I have warmly appreciative things to say in my own contribution to that genre, Soda Politics.
He writes a “semi regular”column on coffee for the Wine Spectator, and this is his second book on coffee. The first was Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How it Transformed the World.
Here, he focuses on the Doi Chaang Coffee Company, the result of a business partnership between a Canadian coffee company and a coffee-growing hill tribe in Thailand. This is an inspiring story of social entrepreneurship at its best. Sometimes these things work. It’s worth reading about how this one did.