By Kamundia Muriithi
Two international firms from South Korea and United States have expressed interest in buying coffee from Embu County, a move expected to yield improved prices for farmers.
Global Trade and Finance Chief Executive Kon Lee of South Korea and Regina Noh of Oversees Business Development of USA have committed to partner with the 24 coffee societies in the county in marketing of their produce.
The two entities said they will partner with the societies to streamline the marketing of coffee due to the increased demand of processed Kenyan coffee in their countries.
Lee said they have resorted to the Kenyan coffee and especially that from Embu County since their countries do not plant the crop.
“Embu coffee is highly regarded in the world in terms of quality. We will work with the managements of the coffee societies to buy their processed coffee to sell in our country where demand is high,” she said. She spoke after signing a memorandum of understanding on marketing with the management the coffee societies.
Chairman of Embu Coffee Farmers Union John Maruku said farmers have been suffering due to poor marketing,with some being forced to uproot the trees due to low pay from the societies.
He said streamlined marketing will increase coffee prices from the current Sh100 that farmers receive per kilogramme to Sh500.
Maruki said the County Coffee Mill which is expected to start processing all the coffee produced in the area will increase production from the 14.7 million kilogrammes that farmers harvested last year.