Falcon Coffees

Origin

Tanzania

Population

51,045,882 (2015 - CIA Factbook)

Altitude Range

800 – 2500 masl

Notable Coffee Growing Regions

North Kilimanjaro, Mbeya, Matengo Highlands, Ruvuma

Total Yearly Production

900,000 (60kg bags) (2015/16 – ICO)

Processing

Washed

No. of coffee farms / farmers

274,000 approx

Average Farm Sizes

Less than 3 hectares

Harvest periods

June - September

Per Capita Consumption

0.05kg per annum

Tanzania is a country famed for its diverse culture, national parks, Mt Kilimanjaro and the stunning coastline which borders the Indian Ocean. It is, however, less known for its impressive coffee production when compared with some of its neighbouring countries, like Kenya and Rwanda.

Coffee is Tanzania’s largest export crop and 95% of coffee is produced by smallholder farmers and their families (supporting roughly 4.5 million people) who often have small plots of 1 to 2 hectares. Coffee is often grown alongside subsistence crops such as bananas and maize and the remainder of the country’s production comes from larger, privately owned estates. It is the fourth largest producer in Africa with nearly 75% of its annual production being Arabica.

Arabica seedlings were first introduced to the country in the 16th century from Ethiopia and Réunion (Bourbon) Island and were traditionally ‘chewed’ as a stimulant by the Haya tribe, who came to use coffee beans as currency. Following German colonisation in the late 19th century, coffee began to be cultivated as a cash crop and exports increased three-fold in the early 20th century. The British then took control of what is now modern-day Tanzania after World War I and started a coffee program which saw over ten million seedlings planted, increasing production further. Today, both Arabica and Robusta are grown in the areas of Kilimanjaro, Manyara, and Arusha in the North-East, Kagera, Mara and Kigoma in the North-West and Mbeya in the South.

Traditionally, Tanzania’s potential for producing top quality coffee has been challenging, but there has been considerable movement in recent years and there is a clear commitment to the create a profitable coffee industry in Tanzania and the TaCRI (Tanzania Coffee Research Institute) was established in 2001 with this aim.

With the help of our sister company, Tembo Coffee, we have been able to access fantastic, high scoring micro lots from the Mbeya region in the Southern Highlands this past season. This area produces over half of Tanzania’s Arabica coffee but has previously struggled to attract investment. Tembo have therefore invested in a green grading facility to improve and classify the coffee before it’s exported. In addition, their Agronomy Training Program has seen extremely positive results since it was established in 2013, improving quality, yield and, subsequently, increased revenue for producers throughout the country.

Specialty Tanzania Offers

COMMON VARIETALS:

Tembo Coffee Company is our sister company in Tanzania. We share the same values and work closely together to have a positive impact on the lives of rural farming communities throughout the country.

Tanzania: Social Impact

Tembo Coffee Company was established in 2012 in Mbeya, Tanzania with the aim of replicating and expanding upon the business model built in 2009 by its sister company, Rwanda Trading Company.

To achieve shared value, Tembo focus on supply chain development. This involves finding solutions to problems that limit performance, creating opportunities for everyone involved to become more profitable. Tembo works directly with farmers to address issues that extend beyond the farm.

Tembo’s team purchased from 1500 producers in the Southern Highlands Region during their first season in 2013. Today Tembo works with over 12,500 producers, exporting 2.9 million pounds of green coffee annually. The company has developed exclusive relationships with 5 independent washing stations in the Mbeya Region of Tanzania’s Southern Highlands, and has achieved a 150% growth in export since 2013.

This rapid growth in exports has been, in part, down to Tembo’s Agribusiness Training Program, which was established in 2014. So far 8,000 farmers have enrolled, 53% of whom have been women. The two year farmer training program involves best agricultural practices, as well as business training – including agro-business, supply chain, coffee market knowledge and accounting – focusing on individual farmers to increase the impact and yield for smallholders. The farmers who have adopted the training program and implemented the teachings have seen significant results, and the intake of farmers to the program continues to increase.

For example, the Ukimwi Tuwezishane Farmer Group – a 130-strong network of farmers were early adopters of the program. Ukimwi Tuwezishane means “We stand together against AIDS”, in Swahili – the group is organised with the dual purpose of aggregating their coffee and supporting the battle against HIV/AIDS in their village.  Since starting the program in 2012, the group have increased their yearly deliveries to Tembo from 8 tons to 24 tons. Significantly, the quality of the coffee the group has delivered has also improved dramatically, and now includes far more of the Tweega and Supreme grades, which fetch more price premiums when sold. Tembo and Ukimwi Tuwezishane continue to work together and explore ways of maximising the potential of their coffee crops.