Food and beverage company Nestlé has renewed its commitment to restore Kenyan coffee glory through continued technical support and training for existing and potential farmers.
The support to farmers is geared towards increasing productivity and quality of the coffee beans as well as encouraging more women and youth to participate in farming of the crop.
Through its global Nescafé Plan programme, which was launched in Kenya in 2011, Nestlé has so far reached over 40, 000 coffee farmers drawn from 12 Farmers’ Cooperative Societies in Eastern and Central Kenya.
The company has spent over Sh80million in the last seven years and now promises to invest more as it plans to expand the programme to coffee farming areas in Western and Rift Valley.
Speaking during a visit to coffee farmers in Murang’a County, Nestlé’s Regional Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Head, Mrs. Judy Mwangi said the company view farmers as crucial partners in the value chain from farm to the cup hence its continued investment in the project.
“The Nescafé Plan programme aims to enlighten farmers on good agricultural practices and good processing practices including certification and 4C (Common Code for Coffee Community) verification, increasing the quality and quantity of the coffee they produce; promoting the responsible farming and production, and empower women and young people to become leaders in the coffee sector,” said Mrs. Mwangi.
“Farmers involved in the Nescafé Plan have already registered immense progress with production raising by more than 100percent and coffee trees producing up-to 10Kgs compared to 2.5Kgs per tree on average before the launch of the programme. Over 6000 women are directly involved in coffee farming.”
Globally, Nestlé will spend about Sh36billion shillings in the Nescafé Plan up to 2020.
Nestlé has been buying coffee from Kenya for over 40 years for the manufacture of its Nescafé, Dolce Gusto, Zoégas and Nespresso brands and the Nescafé Plan programme ensures that Nestlé gets required supply for the brands.
The 2018 International Coffee Day is themed “Women in Coffee” in recognition of women who work in the coffee industry around the world.