|By Kenneth Afor|
|World-renowned coffee maker, NESCAFE (Nestle), in its to bid improve the livelihoods of smallholder farmers in West Africa has revealed that 100 percent of the coffee consumed in West and Central Africa region are sourced locally from the region.
The company said that in 2018 it sourced about 15,000MT of coffee beans alone from Ivory Coast, one of Africa’s largest coffee growers.
Also, in its sustainability programmes, it has been providing knowledge transfer to farmers, teaching them rudiments of growing coffee without harming the environment and that has changed the narrative of the old agricultural practice; putting the environment in danger.
According to Fatih Ermis, head of agricultural services, Nestle Central and West Africa region said that the sustainability programmes have been impactful on the farmers not only in boosting their knowledge on the new farming technique but also, it has improved their livelihoods.
“This premium allows farmers to have better livelihoods by earning additional income. Last year, Nestlé paid more than $865,000 in premiums to coffee farmers across the region. We are continuing in this vein this year, with a little over $841,000 paid to our coffee farmers, from January 2019 to date,” said Ermis.
However, Nestle, the parent company of NESCAFE in its programme; “My Own Business” (MyOwBu), an initiative created in providing jobs and enabling entrepreneurship has reached out to young Africans in the region in training them on how to manage their own micro-enterprise.
Also, Nestle has empowered 4,000 young Africans in training on sales, management, hygiene, safety and quality standards. With this, it hopes that it would have a multiplier effect in the society whereby they would become employers of labour.
Rabie Issa, business executive officer, Nestle Professional believes that the empowered young Africans would not only be employers of labour in the region but also the training has set them on a path of financial freedom.
“My proudest moments on the job are when I see how the lives of these vendors are transformed better,” said Issa.
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