By Ndafadza Madanha
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has commended local coffee growers for partnering with NESPRESSO an operating unit of Nestle to revive the country’s coffee industry.
Through its partnership with local farmers last year NESPRESSO managed to unveil on the international market a Zimbabwean coffee “Tamuka mu Zimbabwe” anchored on local small holder farmers based in the eastern highlands.
The launch of the coffee is expected to contribute to the revival of coffee farming in the country which was once a major foreign currency earner.
President Mnangagwa said the partnership was indeed a reflection that Zimbabwe was open for business and Zimbabweans must grab opportunities that are available.
“Zimbabwe is open to the world for business, but Zimbabwean citizens should be the first to benefit from our economic growth. I’m delighted to see that Zimbabwean farmers are partnering with @Nespresso to revive our nation’s coffee industry”.
At its peak Zimbabwean coffee farmers produced over 15,000 tons of coffee but production almost came to a complete halt as a result of climate factors and economic instability in the country. By 2017, production levels were at less than 500 tons.
However, in partnership with the global non-profit TechnoServe, Nespresso has worked with the local coffee farming community in Manicaland, to establish sustainable farming practices, bringing expert trainers and new techniques to tackle issues such as coffee processing and tree management.
Nespresso said the investment has helped to produce a higher quality Arabica coffee that will be available for a limited period in 18 countries.
“This project is not only bringing back some of the world’s best coffee – it is bringing back economic opportunities in Zimbabwe’s hard-hit rural areas,” said William Warshauer, President and CEO of TechnoServe.
“As a non-profit that takes a business approach to reducing poverty, TechnoServe is excited to partner with Nespresso and the farmers of Zimbabwe to build a brighter and more prosperous future.”
In Zimbabwe Nespresso has invested US$1.2m into the five year project that is expected to transform the lives of small holder farmers in Honde Valley.
About 450 small holder farmers of which 51% are women and 90% of the coffee produced will be sold to the Nespresso at above market prices.
Nespresso is investing about US$10M over the next five years to revive the coffee industries in selected countries with the aim of encouraging rural economic development.
The exquisite and rare coffees are virtually unknown, and have been slowly disappearing for decades.
As a result of Nespresso’s investment and the commitment of partners, coffee farmers in these two regions are starting to rebuild sustainable livelihoods, restore their local economies and bring much-needed development to their rural communities.
“TAMUKA mu ZIMBABWE is bursting with complex fruitiness and zesty, bright acidity, with notes of cranberry to red berries, and currant to grape. It has a creamy, smooth texture when you add milk, making it an ideal coffee for a Latte Macchiato. It’s balanced and round and has sweet notes of caramel and toffee when mixed with milk ,” said Nespresso.