Look for labels on your coffee to find out if your cup of joe helps protect bird habitat. Look for labels on your coffee to find out if your cup of joe helps protect bird habitat.
New self-paced course: Learn How to Identify Bird Songs, Click to Learn More

The organic and fair-trade certifications are laudable programs that give you some confidence about the environmental and social conditions at the coffee farm. However, they don’t expressly safeguard habitat, particularly shade coffee, for migrant songbirds. The Cornell Lab views them as a good intermediate level of sustainable coffee, but there are better options.

Bird Friendly coffee is certified according to standards set by scientists at the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center. To earn the certification, farms must meet rigorous standards for dense forest shade cover, multiple layers of forest structure, and the presence of epiphytes, which are indicators of forest plant and insect diversity.

The Bird Friendly stamp is a double certification, because it also meets organic requirements. The Cornell Lab views Bird Friendly as the gold standard of coffee certifications, and we encourage all coffee-drinking bird watchers to use Bird Friendly coffee.

Learn more about Bird Friendly coffee and find out where to buy it in stores or online at our main page about Bird Friendly, organic, and shade-grown coffees.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology

All About Birds is a free resource

Available for everyone,
funded by donors like you


Need Bird ID Help? Try Merlin

Experience the Joy of Birdwatching online course for yourself, and we'll give you one free to send to a friend!

Just purchase the course for yourself, then look for an email from us with instructions to redeem your free gift course.