Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua says the government of Kenya has made a firm decision to free the coffee sector from the stranglehold of cartels that have long hindered its progress.
Speaking on Sunday, September 24th at the Kagere PCEA church in Othaya, the deputy president called for patience as the Kenya Kwanza administration confronts current circumstances faced by coffee farmers, who have taken losses due to manipulation of powerful coffee cartels and brokers.
“These cartels have banded together, resorting to all means, including spreading propaganda. They are trying to create an artificial crisis. That is because of changes made in the policy people have refused to buy coffee and that is pure lies. They want to force us to sell it to them,” Gachagua said.
“These private millers are benefiting unfairly on three fronts. They take the coffee and claim 35 percent is millage losses and you were not there to see. Secondly, they falsely grade coffee, and thirdly, they give poor prices of coffee selling it at one price, all while our world-renowned beans command premium prices in international markets. I want to urge coffee farmers to be patient with me,” the DP added.
Last month, DP Gachagua revealed frameworks to support coffee subsector reforms will be ready before the end of the year. He spoke on 18th August after receiving various documents from coffee stakeholders at his Karen residence.
Earlier this year, the DP led a Coffee Stakeholders Conference in Meru County to address challenges faced by farmers.