Kiambu County to invest in marketing its own coffee
Kiambu County is planing to establish a coffee company to enable Kiambu to market its own coffee.
According to the County governor Ferdinand Waititu, this will enable the county market its coffee as Kiambu Coffee. “Coffee is a major foreign exchange earner for Kenya.”
For developing countries attempting to diversify and up-grade their exports from raw agricultural commodities to processed food products, one of the difficulties is tariff escalation.
The Governor, “Tariff escalation occurs when tariffs on imports of processed goods are higher than the tariffs on the corresponding raw commodity. So to be on the safe side, most producer countries have exported agricultural commodities in their raw form. Such has been the case with Kenya and it coffee and tea exports.”
Kiambu County is on the verge of surmounting this hurdle as it creates Kiambu Coffee Company whose coffee will be exported in processed form as Kiambu Coffee.
Governor Ferdinand Waititu was speaking at Karuri Coffee factory in Gatundu North where he promised that he will see coffee farmers earn higher returns on their investments. Karuri Coffee factory was also given 500,000 shillings for refurbishing and revamping.
He says the county assembly has also passed a coffee law that will see the chairpersons serve two terms of five years each in a move intended to ensure good governance.
The coffee industry in Kenya is noted for its cooperative system of production and processing.
About 60 to 70% of Kenyan coffee is produced by small holder farmers in the coffee growing regions of the country around Mt. Kenya, the Aberdares Range and some parts of Nyanza, Western and Rift Valley.
By Malachi Motano
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