Oromia is the region where coffee first originated and it is by the Oromo people that the usage of coffee as a food started in the beginning of the 5th century. Oromia is approximately located between 3 degree and 15 degree North latitude and 33 degree and 40 degree longitude. The region is known for its unique native vegetation as well as for being the center of diversity for many different species of plant. The region is the birth place of coffee. The Oromo’s use coffee as food, drink, trade, spiritual nourishment and as a tool for peace-keeping.
Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (OCFCU) is a small farmers owned cooperative union. OCFCU was established in June 1, 1999 OCFCU works exclusively in Oromia Regional State, which accounts for more than 65 % of the country’s total coffee growing land. OCFCU is a democratic member’s owned business operating under the principles of International Cooperative Alliance and fair trade. Members of Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union are the growers, processors and suppliers of high quality, organic Arabica coffee for the direct export.
OCFCU exports traceable, fair trade, organic, UTZ, and Rain Forest Alliance certified coffees. The fair trade premium and support from roasters are invested in social projects like schools , health posts , clean water , bridge etc
By the fair trade premiums and support from different roasters above 365 different projects has been completed and provided to the farmers. Some of the project completed photo is posted in our website gallery.
OCFCU pays 70% of its net profit back to the cooperatives and the cooperatives also pay 70% of their profit to the member farmers. This shows that farmers are benefited by being paid three times in one coffee season. This has enabled OCFCU to grow from 34 primary cooperatives representing 22,691 household farmers to 405 primary cooperatives representing more than 400,000 household farmers and 90,000 USD initial capital to 20,763,000 USD capital . The life of farmers has improved and has also got social service in their village.
OCFCU now have a cupping lab for quality control located at its office and have massive central facility for technical, financial, administrative and also high tech processing facility namely elan, DireDawa and Kality with capacity of 5-7 tons per hour, 3-4 tons per hour, 11 tons per hour respectively. The processing facility has created a job for more than 2,000 Seasonal employees.
OCFCU have recently created its own members bank which is one of the greatest benefits to its own members for the much needed pre-harvest financing. They also provide their farmers with insurance options to cover coffee against loss.