As demand for fresh and quality coffee grows, Agribusiness Initiative (aBi) Trust has funded Africa Coffee Academy (ACA) to train service providers on how to meet high consumer standards. The training will centre on quality management systems and sanitary, and phytosanitary standards (SPS).
Dick Robert Wadada, the technical director ACA, says the training will help coffee players to tap into a wider market. In the two-year project, trainees are expected to have introductory classes on world coffee situation, coffee marketing, international quality requirements, quality assurance systems and use of computers, with level-1 practical on coffee quality evaluation.
There will also be field work on coffee varieties, crop production, crop protection and on-farm processing, curing, storage and transport of coffee. So far, 12 participants from the coffee sector have benefited from this kind of training.
"We want these [trainees] to also educate others especially coffee farmers so that they are assertive in terms of the value and storage of coffee," said Wadada.
Also to ensure quality of coffee, sector participants like producers and processors will be provided with simple kits like moisture meters, test sieves, and analytical rain scales, among others. These kits will help in better handling of the produce and also detect any poisonous elements in coffee.
Robert Waggwa Nsibirwa, the President ACA, noted that quality control has been ear marked as a key intervention in restoring Uganda as a top coffee producer.