Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Trademark Aroma

Writing in Fortune, Stephan Faris explores the trademark battle between Starbucks and Ethiopia. An excerpt:

To produce a pound of organic sun-dried coffee, farmers in the southern Ethiopian village of Fero spread six pounds of ripe, red coffee cherries onto pallets near their fields. They sun the fruit for 15 days, stirring every few minutes to ensure uniform dryness, then shuck the shells.

Last season, that pound of coffee fetched farmers an average price of $1.45. Figuring in the cost of generator fuel, bank interest, labor and transport across Ethiopia's dusty roads, it netted them less than $1. In the U.S., however, that same pound of coffee commands a much higher price: $26 for a bag of Starbucks' roasted Shirkina Sun-Dried Sidamo.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is the problem with corporate America. They want to pay $2 to have a shirt made in China and then sell it for $150. Imagine, they can't accept having the shirt made in the USA for $7 and still reap their gargantuan profit margin? Greed, baby, greed.