Ian Clark with the lab's new sample roaster
Thank you for helping us to purchase a sample roaster for the Bukonzo Joint Coop, Uganda, a member-owned organization run by a large majority of women. Members now have a sample roaster in their new cupping lab that gives farmers the ability to taste quality coffee. Coop leaders can share their knowledge with farmers and provide roasted samples that compare high quality and low quality coffee. They can taste what ripe coffee cherries versus unripe cherries taste like and what properly processed coffee tastes like. When growers have the ability to taste the difference that quality green coffee makes, they are motivated to find ways to improve their growing, harvesting, and processing methods. Better quality green receives a higher price which benefits the larger community.
Members of the Bukonzo Joint
Cooperative working with green
Bukonzo Joint Cooperative is situated in the Rwenzori Mountains in western Uganda - this member-owned cooperative of 5,500 small farms is also 83% owned by women members! Joint was founded in 1999 to serve the poor, isolated farming communities in Bukonzo county, which, due to war, poverty, and location, has been marginalized in the past. The central focus of the cooperative’s operations is offering sustainable financial and capacity building services to the economically disadvantaged.
Bukonzo Joint is committed to improving the living standards of the rural poor, and ensuring that they are active participants in the economic, social, and political development of Bukonzo county.Bukonzo Joint is headquartered in Kyarumba town, Kasese district. Its operations in Bukonzo county’s sub-counties of Kyarumba, Kyondo, Kisinga, Lake Katwe, Maliba and Mahango, include marketing its farmers’ organic coffee; micro-finance, such as providing agriculture and small business loans to members; and member training and skills development. In addition to its more than 5,500 farmers, Bukonzo Joint has a full-time staff of 29, over 140 part-time volunteers, and fourteen training officers.
Members of the co-op celebrating the opening of their new cupping lab