For most, our first thought in the morning is—I need coffee. Whether you brew your own or stop at a local coffee shop—coffee is a comforting way to start a day. It’s a luxury that makes life more pleasant. In Burundi, coffee takes on a more important meaning.
The coffee beans coming from Burundi in Africa have a story of hope, hard work and success behind them. They have changed lives and helped to remove poverty from a community.
In the village of Musema, Burundi, coffee farmers were struggling to generate income due to poor farming methods, overworked soil and erratic harvests. This led to community-wide poverty and malnutrition, especially among children.
Local farmers that produced raw coffee, called cherries, didn’t have the scale, quality control or crop reliability to attract the best prices. Even government-owned cooperatives lacked quality control and environmental care.
Food for the Hungry (FH) recognized these challenges and helped community farmers improve the quality of their coffee through agricultural training. FH helped create local cooperatives and connect individual growers to international markets.
FH supported the setup of three new cooperatives in Musema. The members bring their quota of cherries to the processing center, which is a washing station. The beans are extracted from the cherry husks. Then they are taken to the capital, Bujurumba, and sold to exporters who dry mill them for international trade.
With these new cooperatives, farmers can now raise funds to operate their own mini-washing station, produce high-quality coffee and get a better price for their beans. With quality control and better prices, comes increased and reliable income for poverty-stricken families.
And most importantly, with every cup of coffee, comes hope for a brighter future.
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