Café DoiTung makes Thai People Proud (14 Dec 09)

The Honorable Mr. Eric G. John, U.S. Ambassador to Thailand, and Mr. Apilas Osthananda, Chairman of the Board of the Mae Fah Luang Foundation under Royal Patronage, jointly presided over the opening of the Café DoiTung with M.R. Disnadda Diskul, Secretary-General of the Mae Fah Luang Foundation also attending

     Café DoiTung, a top quality Thai chain of coffee shops owned and operated by the Mae Fah Luang Foundation under Royal Patronage opened its 22nd branch and, as the embassy grounds are considered US territory, can also be considered its first ?international? branch on the grounds of the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand.  Café DoiTung was established by the Mae Fah Luang Foundation to provide an outlet for unique and high quality goods from the Doi Tung Development Project, that offers a quality modern lifestyle to consumers while also supporting the sustainable development of the people, communities, and environment of Doi Tung in the hills of north Thailand. 

     The Honorable Mr. Eric G. John, U.S. Ambassador to Thailand, and Mr. Apilas Osthananda, Chairman of the Board of the Mae Fah Luang Foundation under Royal Patronage, jointly presided over the opening of the Café DoiTung at the U.S. Embassy on 14 December 2009.

     At the opening ceremony, Ambassador John stated that Café DoiTung was selected to open a branch in the Embassy because he and others at the Embassy were impressed with the work of the Doi Tung Development Project in social and environmental development, and they wished to join in the support of the Mae Fah Luang Foundation at Doi Tung and wherever else the Foundation works. This branch of Café DoiTung also serves those applying for visas at the consular section and those going to the American citizen services unit at the Embassy.

     M.R. Disnadda Diskul, Secretary-General of the Mae Fah Luang Foundation and CEO of the Doi Tung Development Project, said that Café DoiTung was very honoured to have the opportunity to open its first ?international branch? on U.S. Embassy grounds, showing that the U.S. Embassy recognizes the significance and value in the work of the Doi Tung Development Project, one of the projects of Her Royal Highness the late Princess Mother.

     Café DoiTung emphasizes the quality of its products, from the production of raw materials, to its processing methods, and its final products, including its service, as it helps create a first rate reputation for Thailand. Café DoiTung and DoiTung Lifestyle shops were established to help add value to Doi Tung products and to return profits into the sustainable social and economic development of the people and environment of the communities of Doi Tung.  With these shops, the Doi Tung Development Project has been able to be self-sustaining for the past 8 years. The Mae Fah Luang Foundation hopes that the opening of a branch at the U.S. Embassy can be a channel to communicate the DoiTung brand and experiences further, to both the Thai and foreign markets.

     Café DoiTung is a direct result of the promotion of economics forests by the Doi Tung Development Project, a project initiated by Her Royal Highness Princess Sri Nagarindra the Princess Mother,. Before the project, people of Doi Tung were forced by poverty and lack of viable opportunities to grow opium, follow unsustainable agriculture practices that decimated the forests, and in some cases even sell their children into the sex trade.  The economic forests of Doi Tung, with their high quality produce of coffee and macadamia, now provide sustainable alternative livelihoods for the people while also rehabilitating the environment.  Value added processing and marketing through our DoiTung brand shops help support the continued development work of the project.  DoiTung shops provide a link between people in the cities and the people upcountry, creating a society of giving and caring for each other.

     Coffee has now become part of the lifestyle of Thai people, especially those living in the cities.  Through Café DoiTung, every sip of DoiTung coffee not only gives enjoyment from the taste and aroma of an excellent coffee, but also gives satisfaction to the consumers and pride to the growers who are together helping to revive the environment and livelihoods of the Thai people.