KENYA – Kenya has allocated Kes 6 billion (US$37.72M) to support coffee farming, with funds directed to the Coffee Cherry Advance Revolving Fund and production.  

Government spokesperson Isaac Mwaura confirmed that the distribution began on January 8 in Makueni County, and which will extend to all 37 coffee-producing counties, including Machakos, Kajiado, Taita Taveta, Kirinyaga, and Murang’a.  

The disbursement of the fund aligns with the government’s commitment to revitalizing the coffee sub-sector through reforms. 

Mwaura said, “Recognizing the pivotal role of coffee in our economic growth and its significant support to over 5 million Kenyans involved in the whole coffee value chain, we’ve undertaken strategic initiatives to enhance production.”  

The distribution aims to ensure a guaranteed minimum return of Kes 80 (US$0.50) per kilo, up from the previous Kes60 (US$0.38). 

Earlier this year, Kenya’s Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua said that the fruits of coffee reforms had started yielding results. 

Gachagua said the State backed reforms have seen successful implementation of separation of licences for milling, brokerage/marketing and buying of coffee which he said has removed the long-standing conflict of interest among players in the coffee sub-sector. 

According to Gachagua, although the move attracted opposition from ‘actors in the sector’, the decision by the government to stay put later saw the players trooping back to the National Coffee Exchange (NCE). 

Nairobi Coffee Exchange provisional results showed the produce sold increased to Kes824 million (US$5.19M) compared to Kes54.8 million (US$345,196) recorded five months ago when the auction was reopened. 

The results further indicated that the average prices increased to US$194.22 (Kes29, 909.88) compared to US$186.55 (Kes28, 728.70). The number of bags traded increased to 23,167, the highest ever since the auction was reopened on August 15, after a three-month recess. 

Gachagua also noted that the change of payment model to the Direct Settlement System (DSS), has improved the transparency to the farmers who he said are now involved in the coffee value chain unlike before when the whole system had been operated opaquely. 

Meanwhile, the Nairobi Coffee Exchange is set to fall under the supervision of the Capital Markets Authority as part of reforms aimed at improving farmer incomes and bringing transparency to coffee trading. 

Kenya’s coffee reform agenda, including the transition of the NCE to The Coffee Exchange, aims to establish a coffee marketing and trading mechanism that fosters fair, transparent trading activities.    

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