GATWICK – Nescafé Gold Blend in the UK and Ireland is celebrating its first harvest of coffee from trees provided to farmers in Colombia as part of the Nescafé Plan with a limited edition pack.
Launched in August 2010, the Nescafé Plan is a global initiative for the entire Nescafé brand that brings together, under one umbrella, commitments in three key areas of responsible farming, production and consumption.
At the end of 2010, Nescafé in the UK and Ireland began working in partnership with the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC) to provide coffee trees to farmers in the Valle del Cauca region.
Since then more than 13 million coffee trees have been given to farmers in the region with the first batch of these having just had their first harvest.
As coffee trees get older, the volume of coffee beans they produce declines significantly, and trees may become more susceptible to disease which affects the yield and quality of their crop.
In Colombia in recent years, leaf rust disease has also been a particular issue, infecting millions of coffee trees and impacting their productivity.
The plantlets distributed through the Nescafé Plan are developed to be high-yielding and are naturally more resistant to the leaf rust disease and do not involve genetic modification.
This helps farmers rejuvenate their farms, thus multiplying the yield of existing land and increasing farmers’ income.
In addition to the trees, Nescafé has also provided training, equipment and support, to help these farmers produce high quality coffee beans and to ensure they have healthy, productive coffee trees for years to come.
Nestle UK & Ireland CEO & Chairman, Fiona Kendrick said:
“The Nescafé Plan is part of Nestlé’s broader Creating Shared Value strategy. Nescafé Gold Blend First Harvest is the result of our work with Colombian coffee farmers to improve their lives and help them grow great quality coffee for years to come. Together with the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC), we’ve not only provided more than 13 million high-yield coffee trees free of charge but have also trained over 6,000 coffee farmers in good agricultural practises.”
Coffee farmer Dora Arboleda is just one of the beneficiaries from the Nescafé Plan. She said:
“I became a coffee farmer just a few years ago but life was difficult as coffee rust nearly destroyed my whole farm. I became involved with the Nescafé Plan after I heard about it from a liaison officer with the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation and he told me how it could help me.
“That’s how I got the seedlings and plantlets. The plantlets that Nescafé gives us are very good and they’ve helped save both time and money. This is now the first harvest of the trees that the Nescafé Plan gave me and it has been good.
“Since joining the Nescafé Plan I’ve become more optimistic about the future. There are good times and bad times in coffee but I feel like the good times are coming!”
To see more about the work of the Nescafe Plan in Colombia and to meet the farmers please go to http://youtu.be/8swVw0j-0sU or facebook.com/nescafe.