Nespresso Invests $20M to Revive Congo Coffee

Nespresso Commits $20 Million to Revive Specialty Coffee in the Democratic Republic of Congo

Nespresso has announced a significant investment of $20 million in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) aimed at rejuvenating specialty coffee production by the year 2026. This substantial funding will encompass various aspects such as coffee procurement, offering price premiums, providing technical guidance, initiating community projects, and facilitating access to global markets for coffee farmers. In addition to this, Nespresso aims to mobilize an additional $20 million to support coffee-growing communities specifically in the Kivu region of the DRC. This endeavor falls under the Nespresso Reviving Origins program, which was established a decade ago with the objective of reviving coffee cultivation in regions facing threats to its sustainability.

Guillaume Le Cunff, CEO of Nespresso, expressed his optimism, stating, “Kivu holds the potential to emerge as one of the world’s premier coffee regions, despite the formidable challenges it has encountered in recent times. Through our Reviving Origins program, we are deeply engaged with Congolese coffee farmers. Collaborating with various partners such as the Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI)/ASILI, TechnoServe, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), The Global Environment Facility (GEF), Clarmondial, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and Virunga Coffee, we are committed to revitalizing Kivu as a leading source of superior quality Arabica coffee.”

In the 1980s, coffee stood as the second most crucial export commodity for the DRC, with its coffee beans esteemed among the finest worldwide. However, the sector witnessed a decline in supply during the early 2000s, owing to prolonged periods of instability that severely impacted the industry. The launch of the Nespresso Reviving Origins program in the DRC in 2020 has been instrumental in revitalizing coffee production, particularly in the Lake Kivu region.

William Warshauer, CEO of TechnoServe, commended Nespresso’s steadfast commitment to Kivu, emphasizing its role in fostering enduring positive change across the region. He remarked, “Through our collaborative efforts to empower farmers with essential knowledge and market access, we have witnessed the transformative power of coffee in Kivu. We believe this initiative will serve as a catalyst for other companies to invest in the region.”

Abraham Leno, Executive Director of the Eastern Congo Initiative, highlighted the tangible impact of their partnership with Nespresso, citing the establishment of crucial infrastructure such as a significant health center and a comprehensive water system in the farming community of Minova. Leno emphasized their shared goal of expanding access to clean water and healthcare with Nespresso’s continued support.

Nespresso’s sustainable coffee sourcing initiative, the Nespresso AAA Sustainable QualityTM Program, serves as the cornerstone of the Reviving Origins program. For two decades, the AAA Program has fostered robust relationships with coffee farmers globally, aiming to preserve natural habitats and livelihoods in coffee-growing regions while enhancing community resilience. Nespresso intends to further extend the reach of the AAA Program in the DRC, supporting farmers in implementing regenerative practices such as crop diversification, soil health enhancement, and agroforestry. Moreover, Nespresso plans to introduce a biodiversity monitoring tool leveraging the unique avian biodiversity of the DRC, as part of the AAA Program.

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