Culture & History Digital Journal, Vol 5, No 1 (2016)

Differentiation strategies in coffee global value chains through reference to territorial origin in Latin American countries


https://doi.org/10.3989/chdj.2016.007

Andrea Marescotti
Dipartimento di Scienze per l’Economia e l’Impresa, Università di Firenze (I), Italy

Giovanni Belletti
Dipartimento di Scienze per l’Economia e l’Impresa, Università di Firenze (I), Italy

Abstract


For many years coffee has been regarded as a commodity. Recently, new trends both at consumption and production level created new opportunities for de-commodifying the coffee market, by a differentiation based on social, environmental and territorial resources, and consequently for strengthening local agro-food systems and improving the position of farmers in the value chain. In this perspective, territorial origin is one promising lever of differentiation, and there is a growing number of initiatives trying to develop protected Geographical Indications in coffee value chains. This work aims at identifying the different logics surrounding the construction of protected Geographical Indications (GIs) in the coffee industry in Latin America, and to discuss the role of history and tradition in relation to the link to specific local resources. Our analysis highlights a variety of typologies of GI initiatives, which follow different logics and strategies, and interpret the concept of “origin” in different ways, especially when compared to the European Union one. However the role that history and traditions play in American coffee GIs is not yet relevant.

Keywords


geographical indications; origin products; history; tradition; identity

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