The Zambezi Sun that hosted the African coffee safari conference is one of the Sun International's hotel resorts. It's brand new and only four years old …and built on the banks of the Zambezi River in Livingstone.
Wildest World Coffee
And why the wildest coffee? "There are more than twenty species within the genus coffea, but only two are widely consumed: coffea arabica, native to the highlands of Ethiopia, and coffea canephora var. robusta, which originally comes from the more tropical environment of Uganda, where it still grows wild today," says Wildest World Coffee.
EAFCA is an association of coffee producers, processors, marketing people and organisations in the ten Eastern and Southern African countries of Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Membership includes processors, associations, roasters, dealers, retailers, and coffee professionals from all over the world. EAFCA was registered in 2000 in Uganda.
Zambian Coffee Growers
The Zambian coffee growers are true pioneers: Before 1981 there was virtually no coffee grown in Zambia. Today there are 4,000 hectares of coffee, providing employment to some 2,100 permanent staff. Seasonal employment during the harvest season (July through October) provides a further 18,000 jobs. There are now 75 large scale and 520 small-scale farmers who grow coffee in Zambia.
Most coffee farmers belong the Zambia Coffee Growers Association (ZCGA). The association provides growers with expert advice on the growing, on-farm processing and export processing of coffee through a team of permanent extension officers. The Lusaka based liquoring department provides quality control and feedback to growers - all Zambian coffee is liquored (tasted) by expert liquorers before being exported. ZCGA is the specialty coffee distributor for green coffee in Zambia
The Conference and Exhibition
Coming from all over the world the delegates discussed the professionalisation of smallholder coffee producers. The delegates learnt how to improve their techniques and organisation skills. And behold... they were also availed the Zambia's fairytale… the Zambian safaris and its friendly people.
Dr Robet Nsibirwa, executive director of EAFCA thought that Zambia deserved this honour to host the conference / exhibition. And we couldn’t agree more! According to World Tourism Organisation Zambia has been named No 1 emerging tourist destination in Africa. All because of its pristine wilderness and teeming wildlife. And Livingstone town is Zambia's tourist capital and Southern Africa Adventure Centre.
A meet-the-Coffee-farm safari in Mazabuka was a visit to a Zambian coffee farm run by a member of the Zambia Coffee Growers Association. This was one of the highlights of the exhibition on wholesale gourmet coffees.
Zambia African Safari © ZAS 2004