KENYAN COFFEE

Kuria Bill will hurt coffee farmers, not help them

Kuria legitimately wants Kenyan farmers to get paid more for their coffee.

In Summary

• Bill will only allow export of locally processed and packaged coffee.

• Export ban on unprocessed macadamia nuts has reduced farm prices.

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria
Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria recently proposed positive legislation to force government to pay suppliers within 60 days.

His latest idea is not so good. He has prepared a Private Members Bill to block the export of any Kenyan coffee unless it is fully processed and packaged here.

In other words, Starbucks, Nescafe or any other big coffee buyer will have to locally process, roast and pack coffee - or not buy Kenyan coffee at all.

 
 

Starbucks or Nescafe buy coffee from all over the world and then process, blend and package it according to the needs of different markets. It is not possible to do all that in Kenya.

Kuria legitimately wants Kenyan farmers to get paid more for their coffee. But this will only result in them being paid less, as has happened with the export ban on macadamia nuts, because local processors don't have the capacity to handle the entire crop.

Kenyan coffee is good but we do not have a monopoly on the global coffee market. No other country insists that only processed and packaged coffee can be exported.

If the National Assembly passes this Bill, the big global coffee buyers will stop buying Kenyan coffee. The farmer will lose out. 

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