With an ever increasing global demand for coffee, Africa’s share of production and exports continue to decline. Coffee production potential in Africa can provide opportunities for growth on every level within the industry, from farmers’ families to national economic development. This would also provide opportunities for young people to engage along the value chain in anything from farming to working as a barista. However, without a cohesive industry level strategy, production continues to decline, leaving the potential wealth untapped.
Café Africa facilitates robust discussions around unlocking Africa’s wealth through coffee. Our vision is to help restore Africa’s coffee sector to its 1970’s and early 80’s level, when Africa accounted or over 30% of global exports.
Growing Systemic Change
After nearly 40 years experience in the African coffee industry, John Schluter realized that if there wasn’t sector-wide change, Africa might not be exporting coffee in 30 years time. Drawing on an extensive professional network, Café Africa brings farmers, policy makers, government officials, exporters, buyers and others within the supply chain together to produce strategies for systemic change.
“While the growth of farmers’ organisations must be ‘organic’ rather than directed, a plan needs to be put in place to encourage and support their formation.” – USAID
Harvesting the Vision
Systemic change requires turning away from the rapid project cycle many NGOs employ and constantly building into a long-term strategy for change. Many of the strategies born of Café Africa’s reach 20 years into the future, taking a quarter of that time to show tangible yields.
Ten years on, Cafe Africa has worked in several African countries, including Ethiopia, Cameroon, Burundi and others. At present we have operations in Uganda, Tanzania and The Democratic Republic of Congo. We continue to share knowledge and bring together key actors to lend their expertise and talents to change.