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Coffee the other black gold of Africa

The cradle of coffee would be Ethiopia and since man began to roast it, prepare it for consumption either in decoction, infusion and filtration and today in percolation.

A coffee tree produces on average the equivalent of 1.5 of our 250 G packets, i.e. approximately 400 G of coffee for ± 90 cups, wealth and trade at the global level exceed 10 billion dollars per year and we consume ± 4000 cups of coffee per second worldwide.

In 50 years, world production has increased by 1.5% per year and with a production of 7 million tonnes per year, coffee supports more than 20 million people in the world and nearly ± 8 million in Africa.

The productions at the world level are located in the southern countries on the equatorial and tropical axis where there are two types of production, arabica (Coffea arabica) and robusta (Caffea canphora).

The first coffee exploited is arabica, it does not like climate change and prefers a cool climate in the mountainous and tropical areas of East Africa, while robusta is adapted to hot, humid regions of In West Africa, the first is reputed to be more aromatic and the second more intense on the palate.

Producing countries

Ethiopia holds the first place of the largest coffee producer in the African continent with ± 5000 bags of 60 kg (The international standard sets the weight of the bag of coffee at 60 kg of green coffee) and is in 5th place in the world, far from the world's leading producer, Brazil, with 45,000 bags per year.

The Ivory Coast is the third largest producer of African coffee, but it is the first cocoa producer in Africa and worldwide. Uganda is second, Tanzania fourth and Kenya fifth, thus the African continent accounts for 14% of coffee production in the world.

Africa has gone from 25% to 14% of world coffee production in 25 years, in addition to the turbulence of world markets and speculation on the New York and London stock exchanges.

Several factors are involved, coffee is produced by small non-mechanized structures in a difficult environment.

The poor working conditions of the planters, coupled with a very low income, pushes the peasant planters to stop coffee production to turn to more profitable crops.

Coffee consumption in the world is progressing, the farms of the future will have to be larger with groups of farmers in order to pool operating resources to reduce production costs, allowing them to increase their income and sustain the sector.

Some countries like Gabon, Cameroon and Kenya have started producing coffees for the local market to protect against the effects of stock market volatility.

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