Importers, Roasters and Distributors

Every day more and more consumers are demanding shade-grown coffee and are willing to pay a few more cents to enjoy a great tasting cup of coffee with the satisfaction of knowing that they are supporting bird conservation, a healthy environment, and the livelihood of many small-scale farm owners.

Every day more and more coffee plantations are being certified with the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center (SMBC) "Bird Friendly®" seal of approval because it is the only 100% organic shade-grown coffee certification available.

For Importers


For importers interested in joining the Bird Friendly coffee program, please email Robert Rice for more information.

The semi-annual reporting form for importers can be found here

Who Grows It?

Are you a distributor in need of a certified farm or farmer?

For Roasters and Distributors


Benefits of "Bird Friendly": (some due to its organic and/or fair trade status)

Those farmers, roasters, and distributors that carry the "Bird Friendly®" seal of approval are benefiting from:

  • Better tasting coffee because shade-coffee beans ripen more slowly, resulting in a richer flavor.
  • Fair and stable prices for producers.
  • Healthy environments for workers and downstream communities.
  • More traditional varieties and new varieties that are resistant to pests.
  • Pollution control at mills, both wet and dry.
  • Access to credit for producers employing sustainable technologies.
  • Adequate wages, housing, and health care for workers.
  • Access to markets for all producers, irrespective of farm size.

These are only some of the benefits you as a roaster or distributor may profit from. For a detailed list or more information on the benefits to you of the "Bird Friendly®" seal of approval, please contact: Robert Rice.

How to Join the Program:

If you are interested in joining with the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center in its efforts to promote shade-grown coffee via the "Bird Friendly®" coffee program, here are the simple steps involved:

  1. Email Robert Rice.
  2. Read over the contract and decide whether you want to participate.
  3. If you decide to participate, ask Dr. Rice to arrange an agreement with Smithsonian's contracting office specific to your company—he'll need all your contact information in order to do this.
  4. Sign the agreement he sends you and return it to his office.

Your Responsibilities

  • Preparing and sending to our office a → semi-annual report on the amount of BF coffee you sell.
  • Remitting a semi-annual check to our office that pays a per-pound royalty fee for BF coffee used by your company.
  • Staying in touch with us about things you might need from our office.

Your Benefits

  • Use of the BF term in your promotional/advertising materials.
  • Use of the BF logo on packaging and other marketing materials.
  • Access to an array of graphics on our .ftp site, all of which you can use in your promotion of the BF coffees.
  • Free posters featuring original artwork related to BF coffee.
  • Free brochures about the program (when available)
  • List of all importers of BF coffee
  • List of all roasters of BF coffee