UCDA and PSFU partner to boost coffee subsector

KAMPALA – Uganda Coffee Development Authority [UCDA] and the Private Sector Foundation Uganda [ PSFU ] have signed a memorandum of cooperation aimed at growing the country’s coffee sector.

Dr. Emmanuel Iyamulemye, the UCDA managing director signed on behalf of UCDA while Stephen Asiimwe, the CEO PSFU signed on behalf of his agency at the event that took place yesterday at Kampala Serena Hotel.

Iyamulemye, thanked Asiimwe for accepting to cooperate with UCDA to drive the coffee sector forward. Under the MOU, UCDA will work with PSFU to establish mutual cooperation in the coffee subsector regarding production, productivity, marketing, policy environment, research and coffee business in the private sector of Uganda.

Asiimwe noted that the private sector is the engine for economic growth in the country and working UCDA is going to open up new opportunities in areas such as ICT, tourism marketing, domestic consumption and finance. He added that the memorandum is timely and a strong public-private partnership will propel the industry to greater heights.

Under the memorandum, the specific areas of cooperation will include creation and exchange of information, cooperation in promoting coffee production, processing, domestic consumption and marketing in the private sector in Uganda and its membership.

Other areas include promotion and improvement in the marketing of coffee, including developing digital marketing platforms, with a view of optimising efficiency and job creation among the youth; promoting domestic consumption of coffee in the private sector; promotion of coffee tourism and promotion of internationally accepted standards and quality of coffee to enhance its competitiveness.

UCDA will also work with PSFU to influence and lobby areas of mutual interest and pursue legal, regulatory and policy changes in the coffee value chain. Uganda grows both Arabica and Robusta coffee types.

The two entities also agreed to raise private sector awareness about the value of coffee to the economy and household livelihood.

Meanwhile, low consumption has continued to affect Uganda’s coffee prices and the incomes that the farmers are supposed to earn.

According to the chief operating officer at PSFU, Grace Nshemeire Gwaku, many of those who grow coffee do not even know the taste of their own product, something she said is unfortunate.

She said those who have been tempted to devour the product, only eat the roasted cherries for special events as a symbol of the covenant between the families and individuals.

As a result, the country’s coffee consumption has stagnated at less than 3 percent compared to Ethiopia which consumes more than 50 percent of what they produce.

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