Café Africa Tanzania established 2009
The coffee sector in Tanzania
Tanzania has an estimated 250,000 hectares of land under coffee production. There are an estimated 530,000 coffee farmers in 50 districts spread across 8 main production zones. In many areas, coffee shares the land with other crops, both subsistence and in some cases other cash crops, as a means for farmers to diversify their risk.
For the small-holder farmer, coffee has in the past been a mainstay of household income, permitting the payment of school fees, medical charges, and the other needs of the household. With the declining fertility of the soil, lower yields, and the low prices of the early 2000’s, coffee lost much of its attraction for producers. However it is a crop which can still provide the main source of revenue for households, if it is well cultivated. Tanzania produces some of the finest mild arabica coffees in the world. These come from the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro in the North, as well as the Mbeya and Mbinga Districts in the South. Primary processing is a key to producing top quality coffee, and the private sector has invested in coffee washing stations in recent years. There is also a volume of good quality robusta grown in Kagera and Karagwe Districts on the Western shores of Lake Victoria. There have been many projects working in the Tanzania coffee sector, but it was estimated they have reached less than 40% of farmers.
Working to Improve Coffee Production
Since its establishment in 2009, Café Africa Tanzania (CATZ) has been working towards increasing coffee production in Tanzania, with the ultimate purpose of improving the livelihoods of smallscale coffee farmers.
To reach its objectives, the organisation forged a strong collaboration with both public and private stakeholders in the coffee sector. It uses an evidence-based approach through multistakeholder engagement. Its work has included the following:
- Over a decade of uninterrupted support and engagement with the Tanzania Coffee Board (TCB) in organizing the National Coffee Conference (NCC) including the transition to virtual platforms during the Covid-19 Pandemic of 2020.
- Serving in the Secretariat of the National Coffee Steering Committee (NCSC).
- The development of updated Coffee Profiles for 52 coffee producing districts. This facilitates evidence-based interventions.
- Supporting TCB in the development of the National Strategy for the Development of the Coffee Industry (both in the 2011- 2021 plan and the follow-up strategy for the period from 2020 to 2025).
- A member of the Management Committee of the Tanzania Coffee Association since 2010 and supporting its secretariat, e.g. assisting in drafting meeting minutes.
- Member of the Agricultural Non- State Actors’ Forum (ANSAF) since 2011.
Since April 2020, CATZ has been registered as a non-governmental organization (NGO).
Sustainable Rejuvenation of Coffee Production in Kagera, 2019-2024
Café Africa is successfully coordinating this project, funded by JDE Peet’s, which aims to give 22,250 farmers in the Kagera region the skills and knowledge to produce good quality coffee for the long term. Training of Trainers, encouragement of youth involvement and the participation of women, are essential components of the project which has already surpassed its target for the number of farmers reached.
The strength of the project lies in drawing together the experiences and resources of all the project partners: JDE Peet’s, the KCU and KDCU Cooperative Unions and their members, Kagera Regional Government and Local Government Authorities/District Councils, Ngara farmers, the Regional Authority, the Tanzania Coffee Board (TCB), the Tanzania Coffee Research Institute (TaCRI) and the private sector.
National Sustainability Curriculum Update
CATZ recently conducted a gap analysis of the National Sustainability Curriculum which was first prepared and published in 2015, based on harmonised extension materials from across the sector. The NSC was adopted nationally with the approval of TCB, TaCRI, and the Ministry of Agriculture. It is used by both public and private sector extension services for agronomist and farmer training.
CATZ updated the manual in light of current needs, and other activities to ensure the curriculum fulfils its role of increasing coffee production and improving farmers’ livelihoods. Funding for the one-year project was provided by GCP/P4F.
Coffee Development Project (CODE-P) in Southern Tanzania, 2020-2024
Café Africa is one of five partners developing this project to strengthen smallholder coffee cooperatives, to support the production, processing and trading of coffee. It also seeks to stimulate trade-led economic growth by strengthening the competitiveness of Smallholder Coffee Farmers (SHFs), promoting investment and job creation along the coffee value chain.
The project targets three regions of southern Tanzania: Ruvuma, Mbeya and Songwe (two districts in each region), aiming to increase the incomes (and thereby health) of 24,000 SHFs. The project is funded by the EU and the Swedish Development Agency and has already seen improvements in the quality of coffee and average price paid for Arabica.
Reducing GHG (Green House Gas) Emissions and and Increasing Yields from Robusta Coffee Production by 7,000 SHFs and Processors
CATZ has developed training materials in Swahili, and conducted Training of Trainers in the use of these materials, as part of a project to raise farmers’ awareness of, and provide skills for, climate-smart coffee production. The project is funded by 4C Services, JDE Peet’s and the German Development Corporation (DEG and BMZ) develoPPP programme.