|Category:||Environmental / Agronomical|
Coffee was initially introduced into the Mbeya region by German settlers, who planted the KP423 varietal across the region. Mbeya production has grown to make the area one of the largest producing regions in Tanzania. Coffee is a crucial cash crop that is farmed alongside subsistence crops of maize, beans, cassava, mangoes, bananas, cardamom and avocados. Today agriculture remains the driver of rural communities in Tanzania, with over 85% of the inhabitants of Ileje involved either directly or indirectly in agriculture.
Government reforms that centered on tackling the governance of producing groups resulted in the disruption of certified coffee supply chains. The following year production volumes in Mbinga dropped by 40%. The economics no longer justified the effort of pruning or the cost of inputs. For the region it has been a disaster. The starting block of this project lie in the rebuilding both supply and demand.
We are supporting a producer of organic coffee in the region. By being able to maintain off take of these coffees we are allowing farmers to achieve income that make coffee a choice as opposed to a burden, it sets the scene for greater coffee production in the region.