Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cafe Doitung, Thailand

Coffee with macadamia nuts and a chocolate muffin

Cafe Doitung at Chatuchak
Toys made from handwoven materials ( Phufa Occupation Incentive Project)
In Bangkok, couldn't help but notice some businesses set up to promote social causes, the most prominent of which was Cafe Doitung which has branches located in many places of interest in Thailand. Sold at these cafes-coffee from aromatic Arabica coffee beans as well as macadamia nuts, replacement crops for opium from the Golden Triangle.

The Golden Triangle is located where Thailand, Myammar and Laos joins and historically this place was known for the cultivation of opium. Since every modern city has its own coffee chain, the creation of Café DoiTung allows the farmers to capitalise on the value of coffee growing, giving them a sustainable alternative form of living. Playing a big part in this is the Thai royal family, especially the late mother of the King, Princess Srinagarindra who first set up the Mae Fah Laung Foundation to raise the quality of life for Thailand's ethnic minorities. This has since passed on to the King's daughter, her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn. Well loved by the Thai people, Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn also heads many other similar projects such as the Phufa Occupation Incentive Project which also helps to promote a sustainable way of life for villagers in other remote areas of Thailand.

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