Jerry Kapka, the board chairman of the Coffee Industry Corporation Ltd (CICL), has stated that the increased levy on green bean coffee exports is reasonable. The levy has risen from 10t to 20t per kilogramme of coffee.

Mr Kapka said, “The increase is not same as 10t administrative levy. With the current scenario facing the coffee industry, the board has seen the need to have a reserved funding source assigned specifically for coffee development initiatives, including quality improvement and market accessibility.

“The additional 10t levy will be used under strict guidelines to help exporters, processors, plantations, block holders and smallholders’ associations to develop the industry. The additional levy was approved by representatives of all sector associations on the board.

“The exporter, processor/plantation, block holder and smallholder, including Government representatives, have seen the merit of introducing the levy for coffee development to be deployed directly to impact the industry, unlike the administrative levies.

“The coffee development levy will be directly fixed to projects or programmes to support exporters, processors, plantations, block holders and smallholders and not only to increase production but also provide incentives to direct interests on coffee farming activities,” Mr Kapka said.

Charles Dambui, the aching chief executive of CICL, added, “We cannot just expect all the time from Government/CICL to fix and address all our sector association’s issues.

“We must be seen implementing some of the policies we made on the board as representatives of the associations. We cannot talk and watch things to happen or expect the Government to fix all our problems. We want to know the standing of Highlands Farmers and Settlers Association who claimed to represent exporters, processors, smallholders, and plantations,” he said.

“The decision undertaken to increase coffee levy was made by the legitimate representatives of exporters, plantations, processors, block holders and smallholders of the coffee industry, appointed by the Government through their associations.”

Image credit Coffee Industry Corporation Limited (CIC)