Senior Program Manager Coffee at IDH
At the risk of turning you off before you read the rest of my comment, let me begin with a quote by a Nobel laureate economist and free-market proponent, Milton Friedman: "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."
As difficult as it may be, try to listen to your 18-year-old self throughout your life. During those years, few of us took on the pretensions of sophistication. Nuance does not overcome facts at that time of life. The "tween" will not understand the adults who assume the Ugandan coffee middleman; even one riding a climate-friendly bicycle will be able to comply with the labyrinth of regulations crafted in Brussels. When the smallest coffee and cocoa-producing countries can not abide by the EU regulations, they will be forced to sell their output into an instantly developed second-tier, likely discounted global market ultimately subsidized by the European consumer.
Turning poultry flocks into orchards and fields seemed "natural" and humane. You were surprised by the slaughter when your co-op free-range chickens attracted fox and predator birds. But that was a lesson that should stay with you.
Don't lose hope! It's your world to fix. Keep going and listen to your younger learning self!
I don't understand how a "co-op" has "shareholders" and "employees". The whole thing stinks.