Coffee Alliance For Excellence

CAFE is a public-private partnership working to create a more prosperous and inclusive coffee sector. The program is helping 12,000 coffee farming families, many of them in former coca-growing regions, to earn more sustainable livelihoods by improving productivity and quality and building links to profitable markets.

In 2018, TechnoServe launched a unique public-private partnership, the Coffee Alliance for Excellence (CAFE), bringing together the U.S. Agency for International Development, impact investment firm Althelia Ecosphere, global coffee roaster JDE, and coffee exporter Perhusa to benefit 12,000 farming families in Peru. Building on more than eight years of work helping families to replace coca production with peaceful futures and economies in Peru, the project targets former coca-growing areas in the regions of Huánuco, Ucayali, and San Martín, where coffee production is one of the most promising alternative development opportunities.

Over five years, CAFE will support the coffee sector by providing farmers with training on best practices for planting, rejuvenating, harvesting, and carrying out post-harvest activities for their coffee, and it will also strengthen producer organizations and other actors to help farmers access better markets and earn a higher price for their product. By improving coffee livelihoods, CAFE will support farmers to continue – and even expand – their coffee holdings rather than returning to coca production.

Central to the program is the professionalization of coffee farmers through the Coffee Farm College (CFC), which was originally launched in 2007 and subsequently tailored for and improved under various TechnoServe coffee programs in Africa and Central America. Guided by regional agronomy and adult-learning experts, and by the results of farmer needs assessments, CFC provides intensive agronomy training in Good Agronomic Practice and Climate Smart Agriculture in addition to other necessary life skills, such as gender equity, financial literacy, and sustainable land use. As in all TechnoServe projects, CAFE promotes gender equity and inclusion in all of its activities to ensure the benefits of training and other program activities are equitably distributed between among enterprising women and men.