Amazon Communities: Tribos – Strauss Group

Launched in 2019 by 3corações (a partnership between Strauss Coffee and Sao Miguel Holdings), Project Tribos focuses on the indigenous tribes in the Amazon reserve in Brazil.

In recent decades, these tribes have experienced significant difficulties making a living and supporting themselves due to factors including the urbanization trend, increasing damage to the Amazon’s natural environment, and changes in tribal habitats. As a result, the indigenous population in the Amazon is turning to new employment solutions.

The goal of Project Tribos is to provide these tribes with the means to make a living by specializing in growing coffee beans, while preserving the environment in a region of important and sensitive ecological value.

Project Tribos is based on three pillars that we believe in – assisting the community, protecting the environment, and holistically producing a high quality product. The project enables the tribal populations in the Amazon to acquire new tools, equipment and knowledge for professionally growing high quality coffee. 

The focus of the program thus far has been on the tribes in the state of Ronônia in Brazil, who live in an area of over 200 dunams (50 acres) in the Amazon forests. As a way to show confidence in the quality and the positive impact of the project, in addition to providing a safety net for the coffee farmers, 3corações committed to purchasing all the coffee from the crops that originate in the project. In addition, the company promised consumers that 100% of the profits from Tribos coffee will be reinvested in the project in particular and in the indigenous population in general.

The project offers significant benefits to all involved:

  1. Economic Value – from the production of high quality coffee purchased at twice the price. Prior to 2018 and to the project, local coffee farmers produced a lower quality of coffee, and sold their products at markets in the cities for a retail price. In contrast, in as early as the first year of the project in 2019, 20% of the local crops were already converted into high-quality, unique coffee, due to the adoption of tools, equipment and knowledge as part of the framework of the project. In keeping with the company’s promise, the entire annual crop was purchased by participating farmers at a fair price, and higher than the market price, befitting the quality of the coffee. In 2020, the coffee grown as part of the project continued to increase in quality, and 80% of the local coffee crops were purchased by 3corações as unique coffee.

  2. Environmental Value – as a result of the promise to protect the local natural ecosystems. The project ensures that the advanced coffee crops be in harmony with preserving and protecting the forests. To achieve this goal, several steps are being taken: Crop seeds are only planted in areas that have already been converted for human activities; monoculture and increasing the number of varieties in the agronomic system are being avoided; the production of by-products is increasing; and the crops per area are increasing in order to prevent the conversion of more natural areas to agriculture.

  3. Social Value – from empowering the indigenous population and improving their quality of life. The project provides optimal income to the population by growing unique varieties of coffee with a purchase promise and a fair price above the market price. The project includes the significant component of upskilling by providing advanced technical knowledge through on-site and remote training. In addition, the project encourages learning about the indigenous culture by telling their stories to consumers around the world.

As with the previous year, in 2020, a competition between the coffee producers was held in partnership with social organizations, technology companies, government representatives, state-owned companies and local authorities. The products of the 10 winning farms in the annual competition are currently being marketed in premium stores. The competition was publicized on digital channels and the winning products are also being marketed via a digital campaign.

This activity supports 2 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals

  • Life on land (15)
  • Decent work and economic growth (8)