DiscoverSpecialty Coffee Association Podcast#78 | East African Quality Innovation | Expo Lectures 2019
#78 | East African Quality Innovation | Expo Lectures 2019

#78 | East African Quality Innovation | Expo Lectures 2019

Update: 2019-11-11


In today’s lecture, a panel delves into the challenges faced by East African processors of high-quality coffee and shares solutions to these challenges, found by three organizations in Ethiopia, Burundi, and Rwanda. These organizations have been working on the cutting edge of methods to improve both the farmgate price and workers’ pay while increasing cup quality. Representing one cooperative and two private companies, their discussion addresses working with large numbers of smallholders, the impacts of government regulation, and the considerations of certification.

President of Artisan Coffee Imports, Ruth Ann Church, leads the panel, featuring Lauren Rosenberg, Managing Director of Long Miles Coffee in Burundi; Rachel Samuel, Co-Owner and Director of Marketing at Gesha Village Coffee Estate in Ethiopia; and Sara Yirga, Founder and General Manager of YA Coffee Roasters in Rwanda.

Special Thanks to Softengine Coffee One, Powered by SAP

This episode of the Expo 2019 Lectures podcast is supported by Softengine Coffee One, Powered by SAP.  Built upon SAP's business-leading Enterprise Resource Planning solution, Softengine Coffee One is designed specifically to quickly and easily take your small-to-medium coffee company working at any point along the coffee chain to the next level of success. Learn more about Softengine Coffee One at, with special pricing available for SCA Members. Softengine: the most intelligent way to grow your business.

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Table of Contents

0:00 Introduction

2:20 How Gesha Village used visual marketing to bring value to the Gesha Village community

14:00 Long Miles' journey developing long term relationships with producers in Burundi and how that's marketed

24:30 How the Kopakama Collective approaches marketing and quality control

Audience Questions

35:00 What is Lean, the management strategy, and what effect did it have on Kopakama’s growth?

38:45 Why did Gesha Village decide to have auctions for their coffees?

40:50 How do you share the marketing strategies you’ve developed with other players in East Africa?

47:15 What is your experience as women in leadership in this region?

49:20 Who are you targeting with your marketing efforts - buyers or drinkers? And what messages are you trying to get across?

55:30 Outro


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#78 | East African Quality Innovation | Expo Lectures 2019

#78 | East African Quality Innovation | Expo Lectures 2019

Specialty Coffee Association