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Trademarking Coffee: Starbucks cuts Ethiopia deal

070514_starbucks-ethiopia.jpgStarbucks, the world’s largest coffee shop chain, and the Ethiopian government are on the verge of unveiling a deal that the company hopes will end attacks on the company’s carefully constructed ethical image. Starbucks spokesperson Bridget Baker told CorpWatch that “a licensing, distribution and marketing” agreement for three of Ethiopia’s specialty coffees would be announced later this month. If the company recognizes Ethiopia’s decision to trademark the three coffees, it would represent a significant climb-down for the multinational corporation that claims to sell “Coffee that Cares.” Starbucks change of mind would also represent success for an international campaign by Oxfam, a British-based not-for-profit organization. More than 93,000 people signed on to its call for Starbucks to complete an agreement with Ethiopia. Image source: cartoon by Khalil Bendib /

News selected by Covalence | Country: Ethiopia | Company: Starbucks | Source: CorpWach

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