Kanyenze People’s Co-operative started as a community-based organisation in 2000 and became fully registered in June 2007 by the registrar of cooperatives. During the war (1996-2001), people lost their homes and poverty dotted the region. After the war, people returned and were mobilized to address issues of poverty and female empowerment, among others. They realized that natural Arabica coffee was a common commodity among all farmers, and they started to organize themselves in 2012. Currently, the organisation is composed of 1,700 members who have started increasing coffee productivity while maintaining quality and their own coffee production surfaces.
The organisation employs both literate and non-literate community members, young people, people infected with HIV/AIDS, and people with disabilities. It also give small loans to its members, which has enabled households to keep their children in formal education.
STRUGGLES AND COMEBACK
In 2012, turnover dropped when shifting production from Drugar i.e. natural Arabica to Wugar i.e. washed Arabica. In the short term, the change led to lower productivity. However, production took off again from 2013 to 2017 thanks to a governmental programme called ‘operation wealth creation’ where the government contracted coffee nursery operators to supply coffee seedlings to farmers. The cooperative currently has a fair trade certificate and 5 regular employees who are also certified.
MARKETING SUPPORT PROGRAM
Since the cooperative made a shift in its activities (see above), it needs to build a new marketing strategy and develop new organisational skills. That is where the TDC coaching came into play. The programme took place from June 2016 to December 2017 and was divided between strategic and operational marketing. Concretely, this helped the organisation better comprehend business data and adapt its strategy accordingly. Consequently, Kanyenze is now better armed to face the reality of the market and can sell more product for a better price (see below).
“The coaching helped us design our washing station business plan as well as gain a proper understanding of cash flows and audit financial reports, which in turn help us to accurately interpret the cooperative’s performance.” Kule Coroniel
Results achieved: (2015-2016):
- Production growth: + 28.71 %
- Turnover growth: + 48.02 %
- Selling prices growth: + 48.02 %
- Evolution of customer portfolio: – 1
- Evolution of certified production: + 0.29 %
- Participation at 3 fair
Since 2020, the Kanyenze is also benefitting from a financial support from the TDC, aiming at:
- supporting the establishment of a drainage and waste management system;
- supporting the installation of a poured concrete floor in the processing complex;
- supporting the rainwater harvesting equipments for the treatment plants.