Nespresso to invest $20 million in DRC to support the coffee growing community, revival of specialty coffee

April 1, 2024
The initiative is part of the Nespresso Reviving Origins program, founded 10 years ago, aiming to restore coffee agriculture in regions where it is under threat.

To continue its support to the local community and economy, Nespresso announced it is investing $20 million spent across coffee purchases, price premiums and technical assistance, by 2026, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), helping to give coffee farmers access to the global markets.

The ambition is also to help support fundraising of an additional $20 million to support the coffee growing communities in Kivu. This initiative is part of the unique Nespresso Reviving Origins program, founded 10 years ago, aiming to restore coffee agriculture in regions where it is under threat.

In 1980, coffee was the second most important export for DRC and ranked among the world's finest but declined in the early 2000s due to years of instability that had a devastating impact on the industry.

Since the launch of the Nespresso Reviving Origins program in DRC in 2020, it has enabled the production of the exquisite coffees from the Lake Kivu region, where the once-thriving coffee farming community has been, and still is, devastated by decades of political and economic instability, that continue to rise today.

Guillaume Le Cunff, CEO Nespresso, said in the announcement: "Kivu has the potential to be among the world's great coffee regions but has faced extremely challenging conditions in recent years. Through our Reviving Origins program, we work closely with Congolese farmers, and we have joined forces with partners including, Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI)/ASILI, TechnoServe, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), The Global Environment Facility (GEF), Clarmondial, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and Virunga Coffee to restore and revitalize Kivu as a leading source of high-quality, exceptional Arabica coffee. In the context of escalating violence in eastern DRC where access to water is becoming insufficient, water-borne illnesses have resurfaced, and daily life is under significant upheaval, it is even more critical to help build community resilience, access to health care and clean water as well as support farmer livelihoods by continuing to give them access to the global market and empowering them in their agricultural transition."

With the continued investment of $20 million in the region, as well as with the ambition to support to raise funds of another $20 million, Nespresso aims to continue the work to back the revival of the DRC coffee sector.

"Nespresso's deep commitment to Kivu is creating lasting change in communities across the region,” TechnoServe CEO William Warshauer, said in the announcement. “In our work together equipping farmers with the knowledge and market connections they need to thrive, we have seen the transformative impact that coffee can have in Kivu. We believe this initiative will help inspire other companies to invest there."

Abraham Leno, executive director of ECI, added in the announcement: "Since we started working together, we have built a large health center and an entire water system in the farming community of Minova. Today, our medical team provides safe deliveries and gets hundreds of kids ready for school. More than 22,000 people from the local community have access to clean water, and as displacement soars, we are a primary source of water for thousands of families fleeing violence. With the continued support from Nespresso, we aim to continue this work, expanding dignified and sustainable access to clean water and healthcare."

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