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THE AFRICAN FINE COFFEES ASSOCIATION MEDIA RELEASE

DATE: 21ST AUGUST 2017
    
VENUE
Uganda Media Centre
Kampala Uganda

The African Fine Coffees Association (AFCA) will hold a quality training for the 20 exporters and producer cooperatives in Uganda at Hotel Africana from the 22nd to the 24th of August 2017. The training will highlight the benefits of the Taste of Harvest competition and Auction as well as provide skills on how to prepare and process high quality specialty coffee beans.

The training components will include improved coffee processing practices and proper use and handling of coffee equipment and drying materials, as well as quality management to ensure efficiency and consistency of coffee.   

The training will be conducted with grant support from the American people through the USAID/East Africa Trade and Investment Hub. The USAID East Africa Trade and Investment Hub works to boost trade and investment with and within East Africa. The goal of the Hub is to deepen regional integration, increase the competitiveness of select regional agriculture value chains, promote two-way trade with the U.S. under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and facilitate investment and technology that drives trade growth intra-regionally and to global markets.

Uganda coffee stakeholders plan to host the first Taste of Harvest Auction alongside the National annual competition in Kampala, Uganda, at the Uganda Coffee Development Authority
Quality Lab in Lugogo, Kampala, under the theme, “Accessing specialty coffee markets through the new Taste of Harvest Coffee Auction System” from 22nd to 26th January 2018.

The training is therefore one of the activities planned to make this inaugural auction a success. The auction and competition provides a unique branding and marketing opportunity for smallholder producers that are producing high quality coffees in small lots (5 to 50 bags) to access new markets and create an international brand for their coffees.

What is the Taste of Harvest Competition?
The Taste of Harvest (TOH) program is the annual cupping training and competition held in Eastern and Southern Africa that has become the premier cupping event in coffee producing member countries. The competition is held in Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya and Ethiopia. It is followed by an online auction managed by Bean Auction, a dynamic new coffee auction platform based in the United Kingdom.

The main objectives of the TOH program are:
1.    Competition: Creating healthy competition among coffee industry members at both the national and regional level and giving constructive feedback to participants to improve the overall quality of the region’s coffees.

2.    Awareness: Capturing and disseminating current and historical data on the profiles of the region’s quality coffees aids in the discovery and buying process. 


3.    Market Linkage: Capturing and disseminating current and historical data on the profiles of the region’s quality coffees aids buyers in the discovery process, facilitates linkages and develops direct buying relationships between producers and buyers to shorten the value chain. 


4.    Promotion: Showcasing and marketing all of the region’s specialty coffees while rewarding TOH winners by profiling them at key international tradeshows and conferences.

5.    Capacity Development: Training, certification and calibration of quality cuppers at national level helps build sustainability into the TOH process and helps support the development of a “quality” culture within the coffee value chain.

AFCA and UCDA Partnership in Improving the Coffee Industry in Uganda.
AFCA and UCDA have worked together for 17 years towards the goal of improving the coffee industry in Uganda. Not only is UCDA a founder member of AFCA, they are also the host for the regional organization.
Together, they have developed the barista and coffee consumption culture, set quality improvement standards through R & Q Grader trainings and hosted two high level coffee conferences – African Fine Coffees Conference and Exhibition (AFCC&E). The high level coffee conferences are held annually in different AFCA member countries. The 16th high level AFCC& E will be held in Uganda from 14th to 16th February 2018.

It is expected to draw over 2000 coffee sector players to Uganda to network, learn and do coffee business. UCDA will be the official host of this event.
About African Fine Coffees Association
Founded in July 2000, the African Fine Coffees Association is a regional non-profit, non-political, member-driven association representing coffee sectors 11 member countries: Burundi, the
Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. The Secretariat is hosted in Kampala, Uganda.

AFCA members include both private and public sector coffee stakeholders, including producers, exporters, international importers, roasters, policy makers, transporters and trade representatives.

AFCA will also be hosting the 16th AFCC & E from the 14th to the 16th February 2018 that will drew over 2000 coffee sector players to Uganda to network, learn and do business.

For more information about AFCA please contact martin.maraka@africanfinecoffees.org or visit www.afca.coffee.