A new technical assistance partnership with Congolese coffee cooperative SOPACDI will be launched under the Technical Assistance Facility of FAF (TAF). The project aims to improve further the quality and quantity of the coffee produced and exported by farmers in the Kivu region.

Incofin is launching a new technical assistance project with SOPACDI, co-financed by the Technical Assistance Facility of the Fairtrade Access Fund (TAF). SOPACDI (Solidarité pour la Promotion des Actions Café et le Développement Intégral) is a coffee processing and exporting cooperative located in North Kivu and South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Founded in 2006, the institution is recognized as the first and longest standing Fairtrade-certified cooperative in the country. Its outreach is quite significant as it gathers 11,733 producers, all of whom are Fairtrade and Organic certified.

SOPACDI’s vision is to improve the quality of life of their members and the overall community through the production of quality coffee, supporting “coffee farmers in full employment, united and prosperous”. In order to do so, the cooperative provides its member base technical assistance, gender sensibilization training, certification support and access to international markets, achieving high quality differentials in addition to establishing minimum prices and sustainable premiums.

“The Democratic Republic of Congo is a priority country for Incofin, in which we manage significant investments. We see the economic potential of the country, certainly in agriculture which represents almost 70% of the country’s economy. The country has suffered from decades of political violence, corruption and mismanagement. We are keen to support SOPACDI, as it provides perspective to small coffee growers in the Kivu region. SOPACDI is one of the enterprises that can turn the tide for Congolese smallholder farmers.”- Loïc De Cannière, Founder and Managing Partner Incofin IM.

 

More coffee with an even better quality

“We, as leaders of SOPACDI, wish to establish a solid and lasting relationship with Incofin, a relationship based on concrete actions that will enable our members, small coffee producers in Kivu, a region long battered by violence of all kinds from the torment of unjust wars, to change their living conditions through the progressive increase of their agricultural incomes. We expect this technical assistance as a first step in this process to be a contribution with a palpable impact on the march towards this great vision.” – Joachim Munganga, President of SOPACDI.

 

The Technical Assistance (TA) project with Incofin aims to support SOPACDI’s mission. The project offers an opportunity for the cooperative to further increase the productivity as well as the quality of the coffee. The plan is to build 42 demonstration farms and to organize trainings for coffee producers on topics such as soil management, compost production and other good agricultural practices required for Fairtrade and Organic certifications.

Furthermore, the TA project will strengthen SOPACDI’s leadership and governance. Capacity building sessions on various subjects including marketing, finance, women leadership and governance practices will be provided to SOPACDI leadership, staff and members. This TA intervention is expected to result in improving the productivity and the quality of skill of the farmers, more effective decision-making of leadership and staff as well as increasing the loyalty of SOPACDI members and awareness around the topic of women empowerment.

 

About TAF

The Technical Assistance Facility of the Fairtrade Access Fund (TAF) is established to support the FAF fund in achieving its objectives through the provision of technical assistance services to FAF investees aimed to develop their capacities in addressing the challenges faced by smallholder farmers. With USD 3.9 million of committed donor funding, including the contributions from KfW, FMO and BIO, the TAF has supported 20 projects in 12 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America.