Inside Kenya’s Coffee Market – Part 2 (#35)

In this episode, I am joined by Muki Yeung, specialty coffee trader at C. Dormans in Kenya, to explore the current dynamics of Kenya’s coffee market.

With over a decade of experience working in coffee both in Australia, Brazil and Kenya,  Muki offers valuable insights into the evolving coffee buying process in Kenya. We delve into recent shifts in market dynamics and their implications for the available coffee selections. During my recent cupping sessions for purchasing coffees, I observed significant changes, and Muki shares her insights to the underlying reasons.

We discuss Mukis theory on the decline in standout coffees, linking it to the high focus on efficient production methods and the growing use of hybrid coffee varieties. We talk about the potential impact of these changes on Kenya’s coffee industry and brainstorm strategies to reverse this trend.

As Muki prepares to transition from C. Dormans to managing multiple coffee estates, she aims to establish best practices for coffee production in Kenya, including sustainable water management post-fermentation. 

Our conversation also touches on why many buyers still perceive cooperatives as the primary source of the best coffees.

We conclude by acknowledging our shared belief that paying a higher price for coffee is essential, and that we have to continue to reward people for producing high quality products. Failing to do so makes it challenging to maintain quality standards.

Music by my uncle Jens Wendelboe.

If you are interested in learning more about coffee pricing, you can check out the “The importance of transparency in coffee — A conversation with Coffee Collective (#15)”. You find it here: https://timwendelboe.no/2023/10/the-importance-of-transparency-in-coffee-a-conversation-with-coffee-collective-15/

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