Behind petroleum, coffee is the world’s second most commonly traded commodity and the second largest export earner for many developing countries.
The global coffee market is divided between the “C” (commodity) market and the highly diverse specialty market. The specialty market offers opportunities for millions of coffee farmers throughout the world not only because of the higher prices that it consistently offers (relative to the C market) but also because of the ability of farmers to differentiate their product through origin and flavor.
There is a tremendous opportunity for coffee farmers to access these markets because consumer demand continues to grow for higher-quality coffee that is grown using more sustainable practices.
Stronger Coffee Value Chains
ACDI/VOCA works with various partners in the coffee value chain to address constraints and to enable smallholders to access elite markets, realizing higher incomes and a better way of life.
These partners include producer groups, government entities, coffee experts, major buyers and roasters, and other actors throughout the global coffee industry.
Smallholder Cooperatives and Association
While there is no all-purpose formula for success, producers must be willing to form groups and they must be trained to know their crop and its market. Most importantly, coffee farmers must understand the importance of quality and know what its key elements are.
ACDI/VOCA assists interested producers in forming cooperatives or similar organizations and in hiring managers to help them improve production and processing practices, purchase inputs in bulk and bypass middlemen to get the full value of their production.
Helping Farmers to Meet Market Demands
ACDI/VOCA helps cooperatives determine if they need revised government policies, financing, or Fair Trade or organic certification. We also provide technical assistance, new infrastructure and equipment, and training in “cupping,” or critical tasting.
Our programs are carefully designed to address the greatest needs and constraints. These efforts always begin with the market and work backwards to ensure farmers are investing their time and resources in activities that the market will reward.
In this way, ACDI/VOCA has helped producers add value to their crop, become business savvy and achieve success in the global marketplace.
A Selection of Past Projects