20th JULY, 22:00
Helios 5
25th JULY, 16:00
Helios 5
29th JULY, 10:00
Helios 5


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Black Gold

documentaries / essays
dir. Marc i Nick Francis / Great Britain 2006 / 78’
Film description

Terrence Howard

An exploration of the global coffee industry (worth over $80 billion a year) provides the impetus for Black Gold, a politically direct and vital documentary from filmmakers Marc and Nick Francis which will certainly leave viewers with plenty to stew on when next ordering a latte or cappuccino. As profits for multinational coffee companies continue to increase, the price paid for coffee harvests have fallen to such an extent that farmers in some of the world's poorest countries are forced to abandon their crops. Ethiopia, recognised as the birthplace of coffee, is one of the hardest hit countries, and the film follows Tadesse Meskela, General Manager of a co-operative union that represents some 70,000 struggling Ethiopian farmers, as he goes on an international campaign to promote the plight of his members and seek to establish a fair trade market for their produce. The film takes us to the coffee commodity exchanges in New York and London, where daily prices are set, and to a branch of Starbucks, illustrating how the customers' demand for coffee has grown in the last decade.

IFF London 2006


From some of the most impoverished farms of an Ethiopian coffee growers' co-operative to the global marketplace, Black Gold scrutinizes the Fair Trade Coffee movement with an even hand and an eye for the facts. With tact and understanding, we learn about the journey of this commodity product that so many of us take for granted.

IFF Seattle 2006




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