Although Rwanda has grown coffee commercially for many years, it has never before been produced for gourmet quality.
The local smallholder population, mainly of Tutsi ethnic origin, suffered terribly during the massacres of 1944. Today widows, who struggle for subsistence, farm many of the tiny patches of hillside land. The physical labor is intense, and women have to use the assistance of their children, which prevents the children from going to school. Now the opportunity of selling their coffee at a premium price means they can afford to pay for labor, and their children can now go to school.
It's a positive story of ""aid through trade"" and displays the importance of roaster-producer partnerships in bringing developing world coffee farmers out of poverty. One of the key elements was the construction and launch last year of a coffee Washing Station, which enabled the Abahuzamugambi Cooperative to produce clean coffee. Bourbon coffee is an international brand of specialty coffee and the first retail brand to originate from Africa. Our retail brand is built around the philosophy of producing great coffee from ""crop to cup."" By building the brand in this manner we are able to directly impact the value equation for coffee farmers in Africa.
We will enter the international market with the goal of introducing fine coffees of Africa to consumers and promoting our mandates for the brand: Economic development, Sustainable Practices, Uncompromising Quality and Cultural Unity.
Bourbon Coffee's vision is to stand as a symbol of new era in African economic development, one in which African nations rise to participate directly in the global marketplace.
Bourbon Coffee is operating as a business: It's primary objective is to build a successful financial enterprise. Achieving this basic objective would open the possibility of several additional positive effects:
- Improve the lives of coffee farmers by paying higher prices.
- Improve the quality of coffee produced in Rwanda and other African markets.
- Contribute to the growth of specialty coffee market.
- Create employment opportunities related to coffee industry.
- Change the perception of Rwanda in the global community.
- Change the perception of economic development in Rwanda and other parts of Africa