Our Certifications

Kōkako coffee, cold brew and drinking chocolate are all certified Fairtrade and Biogro Organic. All our coffee is also climate neutral through the Fair Climate Fund. Read on to find out more about all 3 certifications or take a look at our Sustainability Reports.


The Fairtrade Mark is more than a mark, it is a third–party certification proving that what we sell meet social, environmental and economic standards. We chose to adopt the Fairtrade Mark in 2010.

We recognise that there are other ethical certifications schemes available and alternative ways for coffee companies to outline their procurement strategies (this includes direct trade relationships). No system is perfect, but we did our research and concluded that by adopting the Fairtrade Mark our customers could rest assured that the coffee, cocoa and cane sugar we purchase meets ethical and environmental standards. Further to this, we have travelled to origin to check and verify that the Fairtrade system is effective.

Will Valverde of Fairtrade discusses coffee processing with cooperative farmers in Papua New Guinea. Photo by Josh Griggs for Fairtrade ANZ.

We don’t want to compare the Fairtrade system against others, or against other coffee companies procurement strategies. Fairtrade works for Kōkako, and we’d love to see other Specialty Coffee companies purchasing more Fairtrade certified coffee as we’ve seen the positive results ourselves on the ground. We have high internal quality standards, and over time have proven that you can run a 100% Fairtrade certified coffee business that meets the expectations of the specialty coffee community.

Our Managing Director - Mike Murphy, Fairtrade PNG based Liaison Officer - Gabriel Iso, Producer Support Officer - Will Valverde and qualified Coffee Q Grader - José Pablo Juarez from Costa Rica discuss the coffee wet mill with cooperative farmers in Papua New Guinea.

Naomi Morungao, in foreground, is only 19 years old. Her and her family have been a part of the Alang Daom Coffee Estate, Inc. (AD) since 2004 - she has grown up around coffee. The income generated by Naomi’s family as members of AD helped pay for her and her siblings through their schooling years. 

What Fairtrade means
“Fairtrade advocates for improved terms of trade, better working conditions and the empowerment of farmers and workers in developing countries.”

How it works
Fairtrade is not just about equity in a financial sense. It also promotes quality, best practice systems, organisational structure, social and environmental sustainability and a sense of empowerment for producers. It is commonly referred to at origin as a ‘development tool’ for coffee communities.

The market price of all globally traded green coffee is directly linked to the New York stock exchange. Therefore coffee pricing can vary widely depending on numerous external factors. The ‘Fairtrade minimum price’ ensures that when coffee prices drop there is a mechanism to ensure farmers continue to receive a fair price per kilo for their coffee. As well as this, farmers receive a “Fairtrade Premium” and a price premium for organic coffee. The Fairtrade Premium is allocated to the coffee cooperatives which are chaired by a democratically elected committee. The members of the cooperative jointly decide on the allocation of Fairtrade premium spending to ensure that funds are allocated to projects which will either improve the quality of the coffee produced (by purchasing items such as coffee pulpers) or for community projects such as access to clean drinking water or the building of new schools.

This is the third classroom built at the South Fore school, in the Okapa District – all three classrooms were built using funds collected from the HOAC Fairtrade premiums. 

Margaret Kede, a coffee farmer from Papua New Guinea. Margaret is married with three children and is a member of Neknasi Coffee Growers Cooperative Society. Her coffee garden is located in Bandong village. Through Neknasi and Fairtrade Margaret and her family are able to sell their coffee at a fair price and bring income into their community. Margaret’s enthusiasm and knowledge during the coffee picking component of the 2017 Farmer Workshop demonstrated her finesse as a coffee farmer.

Being Fairtrade certified ensures the ongoing integrity of Fairtrade certified supply chains.
Fairtrade also supports coffee cooperatives to build strong businesses and farmer organisations. They provide training in remote producing communities on the importance of Fairtrade, and on best practices for good governance, environmental sustainability, gender equality, and child protection. They also provide technical support around plant husbandry, organic protocols, and improving quality and productivity.

 Coffee farmer, Abel Kemi, from the Untpina Coffee Cooperative with our Managing Director, Mike Murphy.

 Kōkako is proud to be a key partner and licensee of Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand.
We focus on working with coffee growers, brokers and Fairtrade to buy high–grade specialty coffee, while championing quality, ethical procurement and organics. We work particularly closely with HOAC to create positive change for the cooperative’s growers and their families, actively engaging with and educating them on best practice techniques and our coffee market. 

 “Kōkako has been exemplary in its commitment to Fairtrade since it started sourcing Fairtrade Coffee in 2010. The Kokako team has contributed significantly to Fairtrade in the region, going above and beyond what is required by Fairtrade standards; this is especially evident in their relationship with their coffee growing partners, the Highlands Organic Agricultural Cooperative in Papua New Guinea. They have hosted farmers at events in NZ and visited origin on a number of occasions—providing coffee equipment, training and sharing their coffee expertise with farmers. We look forward to another 10 years with Kōkako as we work together to innovate new projects to help empower farmers to deepen our impact together.” Pravin Sawmy, Business Development Manager, Fairtrade ANZ.

 You can find more information about our commitment to Fairtrade in our Sustainability Reports.


Biogro Organic

Our coffee, cold brew and drinking chocolate are all certified organic through BioGro New Zealand.

BioGro NZ is a third–party verification proving that what we sell meets ethical and environmental standards. Every part of our supply chain is transparent and traceable back to its origin, which includes a comprehensive Organic Management Plan and an annual audit. It means that all of our coffee and drinking chocolate is grown in GMO-free and pesticide-free soils; a holistic style of farming where the health of the soil, environment and people are prioritised.

As a pioneer in Organic Coffee since 2001 our aim is to promote the main–streaming of high quality organic coffee. This is reinforced by our belief that the products we consume should be natural, good for us, and promote and protect the integrity of the environment in which they are grown. The BioGro logo guarantees that a product is made without animal testing, genetic modification and the routine use of synthetic pesticides. It is the mark of a genuine organic product. The BioGro logo is the most recognised organic logo amongst New Zealanders. 

 You can find more information about our commitment to Organics in detail in our Sustainability Reports.


Climate Neutral Coffee

Climate change and increasing global temperatures are huge threats to the long term sustainability of many of the world’s coffee plantations. This is a complex issue and requires proactive action in consuming nations and their businesses to have any positive impact on the producing nations.

As a coffee roaster we are acutely aware that our business contributes to our earth’s rising temperatures across various stages of our supply chain - from coffee farm to coffee roaster to coffee table. This is why in 2016 we became one of the first roasters in New Zealand to offset our carbon. This means that we forecast all of our coffee production one year in advance and offset our carbon emissions with Fairtrade Carbon Credits. These credits currently support a community project in Ethiopia which provides efficient cookstoves to local farmers helping reducing deforestation and improving local health.

How are emissions in the coffee chain measured?
Coffee supply chain emissions are calculated using Fairtrade’s tool that was commissioned by Fairtrade Netherlands for the Fairtrade system. The tool was developed by leading energy consultancy at the time, Ecofys, and is based on methodology that meets the highest international CO2e accounting standards. Fairtrade ANZ has supported Kōkako through this process and the calculations and the compilation of relevant data for the tool.

What does CO2e mean?
CO2 is the gas carbon dioxide. This is a major component of greenhouse gases. When we talk about CO2e we include all four greenhouse gases (carbon, methane, nitrous oxides, and fluorinated gases), which have been converted to their equivalent global warming potential as CO2. So the ‘e’ in fact stands for equivalent.


The tool enables us to calculate the carbon footprint of our Fairtrade Organic certified coffee. A Carbon Footprint represents all greenhouse gas emissions along the life cycle of a product, from the raw ingredients through to production, use and disposal. The tool illustrates the carbon footprint from farm to shelf as outlined in the illustration on the next page. Kōkako has been able to provide a range of data inputs from our own activities, which includes the specific coffee origins we buy from, the gas and electricity used in our production facilities, packaging materials (excluding compostable cups and lids), and the average distance we travel to supply our customers.

 You can find more information about our commitment to Climate Neutral coffee in detail in our Sustainability Reports.