Our Story

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Kabeywa United Coffee Farmers’ Cooperative Society comprises of 12 farmer groups who have elected a board to run the affairs of the organisation.

The decision making process is done by the Executive board members headed by the Chairperson, who is answerable and accountable to all activities of the organisation.and as easy as possible for our members.

Our Story Our Story

Kabeywa United Coffee Farmers’ Cooperative Society (KUCOFAS) is a combination of several farmer groups that deal in the production, bulking and marketing of quality coffee.

It started with 15 members in 2004 and has expanded to over 500 farmers (members) currently composed of 12 registered groups with greater potential of more members joining, the founder members being Mr. Wojambuka Solomon (Chairperson) and Mr. Gibogi James Wosukira, the Secretary among seven board members.

Actual coffee production started in 2007/2008 with a total production of 16 tonnes of coffee parchment and this has tremendously increased over the subsequent years.

There is greater potential for better and larger quantity of quality coffee if more capital is invested in the production, purchase/bulking and payments of farmers’ coffee as soon as they bring it to the cooperative society. This will motivate more farmers that have not subscribed to the cooperative society. Advancement of the modern technological equipment like the eco-pulpers to quicken the pulping process, washing station, green house establishment, a mini coffee test laboratory inclusive of mini coffee roaster.

At this time, we are seeking additional equity capital to complement our own investments as well as those from partners. We have firm commitments to produce and supply several high quality coffee, beverage products and have verbal and written commitments from several partner organisations who are great clients/customers throughout the East African community to buy our products. We look forward to having foreign markets like Europe, Asia, America among other continents as our quality greatly improves and quantity to meet the immense demand worldwide.

We will expand production/sales capacity from 1,200/60Kg bags of coffee parchment per year to 1,500-2,000/60Kg bags per year.

Our coffee stands out from that of the competitors, having been ranked as the best during the coffee world cup competition in Nairobi in 2014 and thus leading in East Africa.
Our customers seek our product as it provides them with the coffee for the speciality roasters locally and internationally.

 

Objectives


Increase production and sales of 16 tonnes a year to approximately 72 tonnes per year in the first year of operation on acquisition of new facility and more farmer trainings and reach approximately 120 tonnes per year by year three.

  • Establish strategic relationship with 10-15 coffee exporters/dealers in Uganda and Africa at large.
  • Increase sales substantially in the first year of operation.
  • Increase gross margins in the next three years.

 

KEY ADVOCACY ISSUES

  1. Fake inputs in the market. Need for regulation on input dealers.
  2. Poor roads. There is need for better roads establishment.
  3. Limited awareness on the planning and budgeting process. There is need for farmer’s awareness on the planning and budgeting process.
  4. Inadequate skilled personnel in animal husbandry. There is need for an extension worker in animal husbandry.
  5. Unfavourable weather conditions. There is need for a greenhouse establishment to help in drying farmers’ coffee.

Our keys to success are

  • Establishing and maintaining a working relationship and contractual agreements with our partners.
  • Bringing the new facility to maximum use/production within three years of operation.
  • Effectively communicating to current and potential customers through targeted effort, our position as a differentiated provider of the highest quality Arabica coffee in the region.
  • Strengthening farmer group trainings and staff capacity building.
  • Strongly engage in research and exposure internally and externally.

Company summary

KUCOFAS produces buys/bulks and prepares raw coffee in parchments (coffee in its post-harvest stage). The finished product, coffee parchments are packaged in 60Kg sacks and sold to the Ugandan coffee exporting companies. Our customers are primarily Ugandan coffee exporters with branches in Eastern region more especially in Mbale district.

COMPANY OWNERSHIP

Kabeywa United Coffee Farmers’ Cooperative Society comprises of 12 farmer groups who have elected a board to run the affairs of the organisation. The decision making process is done by the Executive board members headed by the Chairperson, who is answerable and accountable to all activities of the organisation.

COMPANY HISTORY

KUCOFAS is in its eighth year of operation. It started in 2004 as a small group known as Kabeywa United Youth Organisation, comprising of 15 members only whose main objective was to eradicate poverty amongst the members. This was done by establishing a merry-go-round system of club-funding where every week, members would visit one member as per schedule and each member would contribute fifty thousand shillings (UGX 50,000) to the host, thus totalling to Seven Hundred Thousand Shillings (UGX 700,000).
This money was like a loan which was to put to productive use and ultimately improve on members’ livelihoods. This money would be paid in instalments of UGX 50,000 whenever they visited another member. This system went on rotating until every member was visited. This went on until 2007 when the organisation acquired a new outlook and vision and ventured into coffee production after discovering the potential coffee had in terms of income generation given its great yields in the area. The name then changed and registered as Kabeywa United Coffee Farmers Association (KUCOFA), which attracted more farmers and grew from the original fifteen (15) members to over five hundred (500) members. The name has now been changed to Kabeywa United Coffee Farmers’ Cooperative Society. Since its formation, the organisation has had tremendous impact in quality coffee production and marketing in the East African region.

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COMPANY LOCATION AND FACILITIES

KUCOFAS is located in Kapchorwa District in Eastern Uganda, on the slopes of Mount Elgon on an altitude ranging from 1910 metres - 1920 metres above sea level. KUCOFAS is located in the South Western part of Kapchorwa town in Kabeywa Sub-County, Kabeywa Parish in Chemuron village. It is 14km from Kapchorwa town, 6km off Kapchorwa-Mbale Road.
The organisation has the capacity to produce/bulk 20 tonnes of coffee per year of exportable coffee beans however, this is due to the small warehouse which is rented and inadequate capital to bulk/buy coffee and process.
The proposed Green house and coffee washing station will be located in the same location (Kabeywa Sub-County, Kabeywa parish). The new facility will be 3000 sq. metres and will have a capacity to produce 10-15 tonnes per day (300 tonnes per month) and approximately 2,000 tonnes per season.

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PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

KUCOFAS deals in Arabica coffee production as well as bulking and marketing of quality coffee from registered members and non-registered members. The coffee cherries and parchments are purchased from registered and non-registered farmers/members and are processed in case of cherries, dried and sorted then packaged into 60Kg sacks ready for sale and exportation.
Additional services also include; mobilisation and capacity building of farmers (training farmers on nursery bed preparation, transplantation, maintenance, pest control, fertilizer application, harvesting and post-harvest handling).

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COMPETITIVE COMPARISON

In order to differentiate our product, coffee from the product offering of competitors, all parchments are guaranteed fresh. The whole process is handled with care right from the garden (harvesting) where only the red cherries are picked, fermented in tanks to sort out the affected cherries which usually float, then the good cherries are pulped. The parchment is then fermented for 24 hours to remove the mucilage, washed with clean water at least 4-5 times and later dried using trays and tarpaulings of which the unpulped coffee and the affected ones are sorted out. The final fine parchment dried up to moisture content of 12%-13% then packaged in 60Kg sacks and stored ready for sale.
There are about seven competitors who offer a product similar to ours. Our research indicates that with the additional facility, we would become one of the top two (2) in terms of quality and quantity of Arabica parchment coffee providers. We have the advantage of established distribution channels and reputation. In addition, improvements in our marketing efforts will further separate us from the larger market and our close competitors.

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FUTURE PLANS

KUCOFAS plans to process, package and export the coffee it grows

Our Team

The highest organ is the Annual General Meeting (AGM) that is mandated to hold a meeting once in a year. The board is the next level of governance which runs the activities of the organisation on behalf of the members. Below the board are the management staff who run the activities of the organisation on a daily basis. The management team is headed by the General Manger who is answerable to the Board.

KUCOFAS is organised into three functional areas; Production, sales and marketing, and Finance and Administration.