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Volcafe Verified

Ensuring responsible production through the Volcafe RS Standard

Volcafe Verified is a new baseline for responsibly sourced coffee.

As a leading supplier of green coffee, at Volcafe we take our responsibilities seriously – whether that's responding to the needs of coffee producers or meeting the discerning demands of our customers. Volcafe Verified is an important element of our approach to fostering a thriving, sustainable coffee business for all. So what is it, exactly?

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Volcafe Verified is a designation for responsibly sourced coffees which meet the corresponding criteria of the Volcafe RS Standard. It signifies the achievement of baseline standards for responsible sourcing.

In Volcafe Verified value chains, our Volcafe Way field teams provide groups of coffee producers with general support to enable continuous improvement. Coffees can only achieve Volcafe Verified status after passing an inspection that covers a range of sustainability criteria at all business partners and a risk-based selection of producer farms. These inspections, carried out by multi-layered second-party assurance scheme which includes Volcafe Way field teams on the ground, check on critical and developmental criteria which relate to economic, environmental, and social issues.

Volcafe Verified has been recognised by the Global Coffee Platform (GCP) as Coffee SR Code equivalent, 2nd party assurance (Equivalence Mechanism 2.0).

Volcafe Verified: Ensuring responsible production

Volcafe Verified is our baseline approach to responsible sourcing, but that doesn't mean it cuts corners. Volcafe Verified coffees must meet the detailed operational and sustainability criteria of the Volcafe RS Standard. Volcafe Verified coffees bring many benefits:

Volcafe Verified focuses on continuous improvement to secure a future for coffee producers

Through Volcafe Verified, Volcafe supports groups of farmers to secure their livelihoods and a future in coffee through the promotion of good business and agricultural practices, focussed data collection and measurement, and general support to encourage continuous improvement.

Volcafe Verified checks for environmentally sustainable coffee production

Volcafe Verified coffees monitor that coffee production safeguards forests, biodiversity, and water sources, but also promote the sound use of water and energy.

Volcafe Verified promotes responsible citizenship and safe work

When choosing a Volcafe Verified coffee, roasters and consumers opt for a coffee that actively seeks to prevent forced and child labour while promoting fair and safe working conditions for farmers, workers, and communities.


Volcafe Verified: Specific details

Volcafe Verified coffees will be available from the following origins later in 2023:

  • Arabica: Brazil, Colombia
  • Robusta: Brazil, Uganda, Vietnam

Additional origins from our network will also join as we roll out Volcafe Verified.

In Volcafe Verified value chains, Volcafe offers traceability back to the suppliers directly delivering the coffee to Volcafe (i.e., one-step-back principle). 

Volcafe Verified coffees are kept physically separated from non-Verified coffees by Volcafe at all times, unless otherwise indicated in Volcafe's approved exception list.

In Volcafe Verified value chains, we inspect 100% of all Business Partners (Small and Large) and Volcafe on an annual basis against the applicable criteria in the Volcafe RS Standard. 

Farms (Small and Large) are also inspected against applicable criteria in the Volcafe RS Standard, but we use a risk-based inspection approach. The sampling intensity is dependent on the risk rating of the value chain and farm size, as set forth in our Volcafe RS Operational Guide (our internal manual). 

  • We use higher inspection intensities in high-risk value chains as the likelihood of (critical) non-compliances is higher.
  • We use higher inspection intensities for Large Farms as they are more likely to have (critical) non-compliances than Small Farms.

In addition, independent third-party inspections can be arranged as a supplement to the second-party assurance model. 

If Producers or Business Partners are falling short of the criteria, our focus on continuous improvement can often remedy the non-compliances. If critical non-compliances are found and no remedies are implemented within set time-frames, Producers and Business Partners can face suspension or expulsion from the programme.

Business Partners refers to intermediate processors, middlemen (traders), and cooperatives involved in coffee value chains within the Standard’s Geographic Applicability countries.

Volcafe Verified coffees can be identified by using the Volcafe Verified logo or – on large coffee bags – the Volcafe Verified bag seal. These symbols signify that the coffee has met the baseline requirements for Volcafe Verified status under the Volcafe RS Standard.

Volcafe Verified logo and bag seal

As Volcafe is a green coffee trader and supplier, consumers should be aware that they are unlikely to see either of these symbols on the products they buy in stores and cafes, though Volcafe Verified coffees may be the basis for statements around responsibly sourced coffee.

Roasters may choose to use the Volcafe Verified logo on their products, but are requested to inform the Volcafe Marketing team of their intent to do so by emailing marketing@volcafe.com. Volcafe also monitors the use of the Volcafe Verified logo by our customers, ensuring it remains a trusted symbol of the work involved in meeting the criteria of the Volcafe RS Standard.

Volcafe Excellence: Our flagship responsibly sourced offering

Volcafe Excellence goes above the baseline to create deeper impact for coffee communities and more extensive assurance for our valued clients.

Learn more about Volcafe Excellence

Volcafe RS Standard and EUDR

Volcafe launched its enhanced Volcafe RS Standard in 2023 – before details around the European Union Regulation on Deforestation-free products (EUDR) had been published. Please note that Volcafe Verified and Volcafe Excellence checklists have been updated to align with the EUDR requirements and are in use.

Volcafe Verified and Volcafe Excellence will fully align with the EUDR requirements as of 30 December 2024.

The Volcafe RS Standard will be formally updated in the coming months.

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