By Filtone C. Sandando, Project Manager
One of the major impediments for producers in Africa to adopt certification and/or verification in coffee practices is the cost of certification. What exacerbates this scenario is the lack of local capacity to guide prospects of coffee certification in compliance procedures of the myriad certification schemes currently prevalent in coffee producing regions. Over the last few years a number of certification schemes for coffee have come to prominence with varied emphases on aspects of social, economic and environmental benefits of certification. Much hope has been pinned on these sustainable coffee initiatives. However, the proliferation of these initiatives is not commensurate with the capacity to help farmers handle the compliance requirements when so needed. As a consequent, access to available expertise has proven to be inhibitively expensive for most small scale producers. Against this background, the CFC/ICO/EU Project intervention of enhancing capacity in the Eastern African Fine Coffees (EAFCA) regions is timely as it will lower certification costs through building local capacity.
The Project is for building capacity in coffee certification and verification for specialty coffee farmers in EAFCA countries (CFC/ICO/45). It is being financed by the European Union (EU) and the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC) over a period of five-years. The project executing agent (PEA) is the Eastern African Fine Coffees Association (EAFCA) and the supervisory body is the International Coffee Organisation (ICO). There are nine (9) countries participating in this project. These are Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The Project Goals and Objectives.....
The overall project goal is to increase the value and volume of the coffee produced in Africa through... [continues]
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