Reverend Father Peter Paul Kibuuka, the cooperative’s projects director says they were driven by the urge to undertake value addition in the coffee chain through which they would eventually address its underutilization and improve the earnings of the local farmers.
Greater Masaka Coffee Farmers’
Cooperative has ventured into coffee roasting to promoting the indigenous cash
crop and improve their incomes. Coffee roasting, encompasses a heat process
that turns green coffee beans into fragrant, dark brown beans. After roasting,
the crunchy beans are then ready to be ground and brewed.
The latest brand of locally
roasted ground coffee named Masaka Roasted and Grounded Robusta Coffee has been
unveiled during the cooperative’s exhibition held at Maria flo hotel in Masaka
town this weekend.
Reverend Father Peter Paul
Kibuuka, the cooperative’s projects director says that they were driven by the
urge for value addition in the coffee chain through which they would eventually
address its underutilization and improve the earnings for local farmers.
He says they undertook to roast coffee, as a viable venture that can potentially reduce the overall bulk of coffee sold
as raw material, but maintain its value both on the local and international
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Fr Kibuuka explains that they
also intend to use the product as another precursor for the revival of vibrant
coffee farmers’ cooperative societies, which largely boosted the social-economic status of the region several years ago.
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John Mark Tamale, the Cooperative’s
Board Secretary adds that besides making substantial direct earnings from
the project, they also intend to use it in promoting proper post-harvest handling
practices among farmers and to eliminate incidents of rejecting Uganda’s coffee
produce on the export market over quality concerns.
He says that Masaka Roasted and
Grounded Robusta Coffee has been already distributed to several outlets across
the country. They are now working on modalities of exporting it.
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The consumption rate of coffee in
Uganda is still so low, standing at not more than 5 per cent of the local
coffee production. Inspire Africa, a development agency that among other
things, promotes local coffee consumption projects a 10 per cent increase in local
consumption of coffee, which could earn Uganda 7.7 trillion Shillings (USD 2.3
billion) per year.
Figures at the Uganda Coffee
Development Authority-UCDA indicate that the country’s coffee production
capacity increased to at least 5.1 million 60-kg bags, up from 4.4 million bags