Boost for Zim coffee production

HARARE - South Africa’s Nespresso yesterday announced a long-term investment plan to revive Zimbabwe’s coffee industry and stimulate the rural economy.

The company — a world leader in coffee machines, capsules and coffee accessories — will provide training and technical assistance to 400 smallholder coffee farmers over the next five years, with the goal of increasing the country’s production of quality sustainable coffee.

Zimbabwe’s coffee sector is in danger of disappearing as the result of a sharp decline in production over the past 18 years, following a series of economic shocks affecting many of the country’s agricultural industries.

Nespresso expects to buy more than 95 percent of the high quality coffee production of Zimbabwean smallholders this season.

The coffee will be available to global consumers in 2019.

Nespresso chief executive Jean-Marc Duvoisin said the company is already working with farmers for the next harvest, where it expects volumes to increase, marking a potential turning point for Zimbabwe’s coffee producers.

“We are investing in reviving coffee farming in different regions of the world, where adverse conditions have impacted the lives of farmers and their ability to grow and nurture their coffee industries.

“Zimbabwe has a long history of producing beautiful coffees and we are pleased to be working with farmers through our AAA Sustainable Quality Programme to help bring this industry back to life,” he said.

Together with TechnoServe, an international non-profit organisation specialising in business solutions to poverty, Nespresso is training farmers to revive their production through climate-smart, sustainable farming practices.

“We are honoured to partner with Nespresso and the farmers of Zimbabwe to help transform one of the country’s most promising sectors and share more of its incredible coffee with the world,” said TechnoServe President and chief executive William Warshauer.

“In line with TechnoServe’s market-centered approach to reducing poverty, we know that better coffee will lead to better incomes, better lives, and better futures for the hardworking people of Zimbabwe.”

The revival of the Zimbabwean coffee industry is part of Nespresso’s commitment to investing in coffee communities to create sustainable sources of income, preserve the environment and ensure coffee availability for future generations.

Nespresso’s investment in Zimbabwe follows similar efforts the company has made to revive coffee production in South Sudan and in former conflict zones of Colombia.
— The Financial Gazette

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