A Growing Coffee Partnership

July 14, 2015

Nespresso’s sustainability strategy calls for an expansion of its efforts with TechnoServe to support coffee farmers in East Africa.

Coffee is one of the world’s most popular beverages, yet more than 4 million of the world’s smallholder coffee farmers live below the poverty line. As a leading coffee company, Nespresso has committed to helping coffee farmers in East Africa improve their livelihoods. With the recent one year anniversary of their sustainability strategy “The Positive Cup,” Nespresso is looking to expand its partnership with TechnoServe in order to meet its sustainability goals.

Time magazine profiles the strides Nespresso and TechnoServe are making in South Sudan.
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TechnoServe’s work with Nespresso focuses around the AAA Sustainable Quality Program, a program designed to improve the yield and quality of coffee produced by smallholder farmers in Ethiopia, Kenya and South Sudan, emphasizing shared value through environmental and social sustainablility. This is achieved through collaboration with local governments and other stakeholders to enhance coffee-processing capabilities, improving socioeconomic conditions in farming communities and creating solutions to challenges in the coffee supply chain.

In a recent article, Nespresso’s Brenda Clery emphasizes the need for program expansion, highlighting impact to date:

Nespresso aims to source 100 percent of its coffee from its AAA Sustainable Quality™ Program by 2020. This depends heavily on the extension of the program into Kenya and Ethiopia, to support a more skilled, self-sufficient and sustainable farming community. In the last 12 months Nespresso and TechnoServe have provided training and technical assistance to over 10,000 farmers, and will reach 50,000 farmers by 2020.

Nespresso’s partnership with TechnoServe in Africa began in 2013, and while future growth is being stressed in Kenya and Ethiopia, the program is perhaps best known for its operations in the world's newest country: South Sudan. Navigating nascent governing and economic frameworks, TechnoServe and Nespresso set many firsts in their development of the coffee industry in South Sudan.

A recent Time magazine article profiles the strides Nespresso and TechnoServe are making in South Sudan with support from Nespresso brand ambassador George Clooney:

At the nexus of celebrity, cause and commerce, Nespresso’s South Sudan project aims to build the coffee industry from the ground up, by planting trees, training farmers in sustainable growing practices, and helping locals set up basic processing mills and sales cooperatives. They have invested $750,000 so far through TechnoServe, a nonprofit development organization that seeks to solve poverty through creating local business.

While the story of South Sudan is one indelibly linked with hardship and violence, Nespresso and TechnoServe are offering a rare narrative of hope, creating jobs and establishing business environment that has led to the country’s first non-oil exports.


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