Fairtrade NAPP has 68 Small-scale Coffee Producer Organisations (50% organic) supporting 81741 farmers across Indonesia, Vietnam, India, Myanmar, Laos, Papua New Guinea, and China who produce approx. 56300 MT of coffee of which the maximum volume is being exported to European countries.

Some of the critical challenges faced by the majority of the producers include lack of access to market and commercial growth, climate change’s effect on the environment and their livelihood sustainability, reduction in yield, lack of cost production efficiency, need for alternative income generation, and improving the post-harvest processing capacity at farm level.

To support and strengthen producers, the Coffee Development Plan for 2022-25 was launched based on their needs assessment and priorities and in alignment with the Regional and  Global Fairtrade Coffee Strategy.

The overall objective of NAPP CDP 2022-25 is to strengthen and empower producer beneficiaries from India, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Laos who contribute approx. 89 to 95% of the coffee from the region. The Project will cover 40 Fairtrade Coffee SPOs benefitting over 1400+ farmer members as direct beneficiaries.

The program has been designed to contribute to the sustainable livelihood of the farmer members and farm workers by:-

  • building their capacity with access to market and commercial growth,
  • increasing their revenue through yield improvement, cost production efficiency, and non-coffee farm alternative income generation projects
  • improving their post-harvest processing capacity at the farm level,
  • building their resilience to the hydro-meteorological hazards at Fairtrade-certified coffee farms to protect the forest ecosystems, and environment.

In addition, the final result of the project will help advocate more about Fairtrade and bring in more supply chains to the Fairtrade coffee sector, producers can exchange knowledge on good practices,  the improved quality coffee beans will attract more buyers and the awareness of [and prevention of] issues of deforestation and environmental sustainability will help producers comply to the requirement of the new policy of the European Commission.

In India, some of the major needs identified for producers are:

  • To improve coffee quality despite favourable natural conditions, many producers struggle to achieve the desired quality output from their produce due to multiple factors, including lack of awareness and training, lack of proper infrastructure support, undisciplined production and harvesting practices, non-uniform processing techniques, etc. Achieving a superior and uniform quality across all the farmer members can ensure a better quality batch and better prospects of sales and prices for the producer organisations.
  • Many coffee SPOs in south India comprises of small and marginal farmers, deprived of proper processing and value-addition facilities. For coffee, farm-level processing is crucial while many farmers still are drying their coffee beans on the ground resulting in deteriorating quality and adulteration of stones and similar substances. Eventually, farmers lose out on prices, and many a time their product is not accepted in the international market. To bring in a better processing facility including drying and hulling, both farm-level and SPO-level interventions are important.
  • Reduction in yield, lack of cost production efficiency, Need for alternative income generation, and need for improved post-harvest processing capacity at the farm level: In India, most coffee farmers practice shade cultivation to grow Robusta and Arabica. There has been a  substantial decrease in the yield in recent years due to climate variability, erratic rainfalls, untimely blossom showers, loss of shade trees, and many more. One of the significant reasons why farmers are helpless is their dependency on the old coffee trees that they have been growing for decades, which cannot cope with the multitude of exogenous variabilities happening in their natural environment.

The possible solution for the farmers is to try, test, and identify more suitable varieties that fit better to the current environment and can give better yields at the same time.

Therefore, a tripartite MOU was signed by Fairtrade NAPP with Central Coffee Research Institute (CCRI) in association with its Partner Organisation – EFFORT on 21st November 2022 for the implementation of the projects under the Coffee Development Plan (CDP).

The Central Coffee Research Institute, established in 1925, is located in the heartland of coffee tracts, near Balehonnnur in Chikmagalur district of Karnataka. It is the Research and Extension wing of the Coffee Board of India. The Institute is involved in intensive research in the disciplines of Plant Breeding, Agronomy, Agricultural Chemistry & Soil Science, Plant Physiology, Pathology, Entomology, and Post-harvest Technology. Around 60 scientific and technical personnel are involved in carrying out research in various disciplines.

Regular training programs are conducted for estate managers and supervisory personnel of the coffee plantations and also for the extension officers of the Coffee Board.

Under the partnership, CCRI has trained 123 participants from 13 Producer Organisations from Kerala and Karnataka on ‘Coffee Green Bean Quality Improvement and Value Addition’.

In 2023 the next capacity building program will be organised through the establishment of Coffee Demo plots and demonstration of best cultivation practices towards yield improvement.

The training was very insightful for me as well as for the farmers in my organisation. As it is the harvesting time, it really helped in understanding more on quality improvement post harvesting by ensuring the right practices while sorting, packing and storing. Looking forward to more such trainings in the future.

 Augustine from Malabar Agriculture Society

The training program of CCRI was excellent. Even though we train our farmers, the real information provided by the authorities of coffee board with visual aids, has really helped our participants understand the real factors. For farmers, starting from planting till drying is their focus but through this training they understood why they should harvest in a quality oriented way. Cupping and other quality evaluations training is needed for the officers of organizations. The Coffee Board scientists within their time limit provided us with such an informative session. Thank you to the Fairtrade NAPP team for taking such an initiative to help and support our small producer farmer community with need based services and assistance.

Sheena Susan Varghese – HOWFFA


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