The future of coffee: Ethiopian coffee producer shares success at Expo Dubai
The global outbreak of the COVID-19 virus has had a major impact on international trade. The coffee market and supply chain have not been spared. While coffee-consuming countries were largely the first to feel the sting, producing countries were hit soon after and are still adapting to new obstacles on top of existing pressures linked to a climate and price crisis.
Ethiopia, the fourth leading coffee producer in the world, is no exception. Elsa Dinka is Export Sales Senior Expert at the Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (OCFCU). She says that the pandemic has caused an aggressive increase in production costs caused by a lack of agricultural inputs and the price increase of raw material. Combined with disrupted communication with over 400 member cooperatives and interrupted demand linked to lockdowns, keeping up production and sales flow has been difficult.
‘To keep our experts connected with our cooperatives, we have made great strides in using mobile and digital technologies. This has enabled us to provide continued support to our coffee farmers, to keep production going and coffee quality unharmed. We are also exploring new markets and partnerships’, she says.
OCFCU and other Ethiopian coffee farmer cooperative members of the International Trade Center’s Alliances for Action network and programme are exploring sustainable solutions and related services to overcome the negative effects of disruption brought by Covid-19. Alliances for Action works to establish a network that transforms food systems and advances the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through producer partnerships that cultivate ethical, climate-smart, and sustainable agricultural value chains. In Ethiopia and through ITC’s Netherlands Trust Fund V project, Alliances for Action focuses on building platforms for better market linkages and sales, whilst building capacity of small businesses and producer cooperatives.
‘The plan is to introduce an online system that supports and accompanies coffee farmers from afar for better product quality. We are also keen to reach new markets and buyers to increase our resilience’, says Elsa.
The Senior Sales Expert will be joining a panel of specialists from across the coffee industry at Expo Dubai, to discuss the future of the coffee sector and what the sector can expect in terms of emerging trends, challenges and efforts for a more sustainable industry.
About the Event
‘What’s brewing? The future of coffee’, will be hosted by ITC’s Alliances for Action programme with partners in the UN Hub at Expo Dubai 2020 on 28 February 2022, 10:00-12:00 CET / 13:00-15:00 Dubai time. The focus will be on exploring a post-COVID future for the coffee industry in terms of what we may expect in the spheres of quality, production, consumer trends and more.
To participate online, please register here.