Monday 08 August 2022

Breedcafs: a new EU-funded project for a sustainable coffee sector

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To develop a sustainable coffee sector, Europe funds Breedcafs, a four-year multi-partners project launched in June 2017, coordinated by Cirad (France). Indeed, coffee is facing a critical situation because entire coffee crops could be devastated by changing temperatures, disrupting the supply chain and destroying the livelihoods of many coffee producers.

Breedcafs’ ambitions

  • Create new coffee hybrid varieties better adapted to climate change and to agroforestry systems (AFS), selected by working together with local farmers to study the agronomic, productive and economic performance of the new hybrids in their environment, as well as their perception and acceptance
  • Develop an innovative molecular-assisted breeding strategy
  • Generate an unprecedented thorough knowledge of coffee physiological responses against several climatic scenarios and under agroforestry conditions
  • Disseminate climate-resilient, AFS-adapted, high-yielding, disease-resistant, high-cup quality coffee hybrids
  • Design a resilient, inclusive, and market-integrated agroforestry system based on elite coffee hybrids that will benefit both local farmers and roasters through direct trade relationships
  • Implement a consensual governance pathway of R&D in coffee for strengthening and scaling-up the new breeding strategy and expanding access to improved varieties for coffee producers.

Breedcafs will thus be contributing to the three pillars of sustainable development: environmental, social, and economic

  • Promoting the more sustainable practices of AFS, a key strategy for the climate resilience of coffee. AFS reduce environmental risks (low inputs), agronomic risks (diversification of agricultural products), and economic risks (stable income)
  • Responding to the challenge of farm renovation, the bottleneck of smallholders, since new varieties adapted to climate change are critical for the future of coffee and of local producers
  • Improving farm profitability with specialty coffees resulting in higher coffee prices, a key enabler for households to earn a living income
  • Transferring to local women’s cooperatives the technical knowledge for large-scale clonal propagation of coffee hybrids
  • Creating the conditions for equitable and fair trade, allowing local farmers to achieve greater value and stability from growing these high-quality coffee varieties
  • Providing roasters with new, exclusive-quality, traceable, specialty coffees to exploit a niche in the world wide specialty coffee market.

Discover more about Breedcafs’ objectives, partners, results, news at :

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