No 30

Methodology for Measuring Carbon Footprint of Colombian Coffee Was Certified

April, 2014


Methodology for Measuring Carbon Footprint of Colombian Coffee Was Certified

The recent certification of the methodology to measure carbon footprint for the entire Colombian coffee cycle represents a great added value in terms of sustainability for 100% Program members.

In a not too distant future, the 100% Colombian Coffee Program members will be able to offer a coffee free from emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs).

Last December, the Colombian Institute for Technical Standards and Certification (Icontec), the highest authority in Colombia in the matter, granted the certification for the methodology developed by Cenicafé to measure and manage the carbon-equivalent footprint of the coffee value chain.

This certification, the culmination of a long research process, will open important market opportunities for 100% Program members, which will be able to offer higher added value and differentiation in environmental matters.

With the help of consultants, Café de Colombia is evaluating the opportunities that this certification represents, while carrying out the homologation process by a certification body of international recognition that endorses this methodology.

By having accurate information on carbon footprint of Colombian coffee, 100% Program members will be able to purchase certificates of carbon sequestration in the international market to offset emissions from the coffee chain and offer products that are neutral in GHG emissions.


In line with an increasing environmental awareness, consumers will also have more accurate and detailed information on carbon footprint of a product or brand linked to Café de Colombia, which will facilitate their purchase decision.

From an analysis of emissions and removals of GHG during the life cycle of goods and services, Icontec endorsed and certified that measuring of carbon footprint for the domestic coffee production, processing and marketing chain meets requirements of the Colombian technical standard NTC 5947.

The certification, which has a special domestic and international significance, was achieved for the specific measurement of a 300,000-Kg coffee lot from the municipality of La Unión, in the department of Nariño, which served as a pilot, covering the following steps of the value chain:

  • 1000 farms in the municipality of La Unión, Nariño.
  • The Coffee Growers Cooperative of northern Nariño.
  • Almacafé SA, Pasto branch (the logistics operator of the coffee guild).
  • Torrefactora Almacafé S.A (roaster).
  • Operadora Portuaria COPC, Buenaventura (operator at the port).
  • Buencafé Liofilizado de Colombia (freeze-dried coffee factory), Chinchiná.
  • Distribution Center (CEDI), Bogotá.
  • Juan Valdez coffee shops, Bogotá.

This is one of the first exercises of this kind in Colombia that covers all stages of the value chain of an agricultural produce.

You are invited to learn more about our coffee family and our products, visiting the BEAN & BEYOND sections on the top of this page.