Costa Coffee now sells coffee made with beans from Rainforest Alliance certified farms in every one of it 785 UK stores.

The coffee chain will buy almost 1,500 tonnes of green beans, which is 30% of its annual requirements from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. Costa and the Rainforest Alliance are also discussing how to increase this percentage as more farms are certified.

“We believe we have a responsibility to ensure that coffee production is sustainable, that it supports coffee growing communities and protects the environment,” said John Derkach, managing director of Costa Coffee. “YouGov research has revealed that UK consumers want ethically sourced coffee, another reason why we have made this important choice for our business.”

The Rainforest Alliance works with farmers to improve conditions for the workers and their families, such as ensuring decent wages are paid and that workers have housing and access to clean water. It also ensures farms are run in an environmentally sustainable manner.

“Costa Coffee’s commitment to source increasing amounts of coffee from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms demonstrates that sustainably sourced coffee really is now the mainstream choice,” said Tensie Whelan, president of Rainforest Alliance. “Costa customers can enjoy a great tasting cup of coffee knowing that it comes from well managed farms where workers are well cared for, children are able to go to school and forests and wildlife are protected.”

Costa’s global stores will sell coffee using these beans from January 2009.