From The Field Trading Company - About Us
  TATIFA Association with new tree nursery.
At From the Field, we offer gourmet, single-origin, equitably sourced Bourbon vanilla beans. We are a family-owned company based in Oakland, California and Madagascar. Our team is committed to equitable trade, community development, and organic cultivation.
  Directly Different: Our Model of Trade  
James Delafield, Co-Founder, planting clove trees.  

At From the Field, we think about trade a bit differently. That is because we learned about trade in a different way: by first working at the farmer level for over two years as Peace Corps Environment volunteers in Madagascar, experiencing hands-on vanilla cultivation and curing.

  Sarah Osterhoudt, Co-Founder, sorting green vanilla beans from harvest.

During this time, we also had many long conversations with farmers and families about how they imagined better trade systems. It is from these ideas and conversations that we developed our FTF trade model, working directly with rural grower associations. Such models assure that income is circulated back into rural communities, and empowers growers to share ideas, information, and materials with one another.

Local Woman sun-curing vanilla beans.


Overall, we enjoy connecting the lives of growers with the lives of people who love their vanilla beans. Consumers can know that their purchase helped to build rural libraries, support reforestation projects, and fund farmer training programs. Growers can receive higher prices, and gain increased understanding of the markets where their products are sold. Our company takes a long-term approach to trade relationships, and we are continuously inspired by the real differences that such efforts can make in communities near and far.


Our Staff
The From the Field Trade Philosophy

At From the Field, we believe trade is about exchange: exchange of ideas, exchange of cultures, and exchange of products. Our staff and partners recognize not only the importance of money economies to rural communities, but also the real role that social and natural economies play in fostering a high quality of life.

Nathaniel Delafield, Co-Founder, helps repair a village roof.

That is why our business model works directly with Malagasy rural farmer associations, supporting existing local systems that lead to strong communities and healthy environments. This model allows our clients to know where their products are coming from, and fosters a more direct link between growers of vanilla beans and those who appreciate gourmet products.


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