In early June, Fairtrade launched the project “Coffee quality improvement though wet coffee mills” in Papua New Guinea (PNG).
The project is a joint initiative of PNG’s Coffee Industry Corporation (CIC), four Fairtrade coffee producer organisations (Unen Choit, Komkul, Untpina and Neknasi) and Fairtrade Australia New Zealand, led by Producer Support Officer Will Valverde and Liaison Officer Gabriel Iso.
CIC led the design of this project, aimed at transitioning producers from a basic fermentation process to a fully washed coffee process, in order to improve quality and add value to the final product. The green bean produced through these methods will meet the requirements of specialty coffee markets. The project includes the establishment of wet processing facilities, the acquisition of one compact wet coffee mill per producer group, and training on the installation, operation and maintenance of the equipment.
Monitoring and evaluation will be done in partnership with CIC and Fairtrade Australia New Zealand’s Producer Support and Relations team. This pilot initiative will be carried out until early 2016 and supported through Fairtrade ANZ’s Development Fund. The results of the project will guide future interventions in the same area, allowing more coffee producers to benefit from the training.