National Espresso Day, a food holiday, is observed in several countries around the world on 23rd November. It’s no secret coffee plays an important role in the lives of many people in the West, and this holiday serves as a way to commemorate the significance of the beverage. The drink is also widely consumed and produced in East Africa. In this post, we will highlight a few factors which indicate the significance of the day in East Africa:
Among the Largest Producers & Exporters of Coffee
With more than 12.4 million square kilometers of farmland available and less than 4 million square kilometers of forest, East Africa is an ideal place for coffee growing. Several East African countries, including Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, and Ethiopia, are among the largest producers and exporters of coffee in the world. Although Africa only accounts for 12.8% of the world’s coffee output, led by Ethiopia and Uganda, which goes to show the growing prominence of the coffee sector in the region.
The Next Frontier for Coffee Drinkers
If you thought coffee is only drunk in the western countries, think again! Africa, according to several experts, is the next frontier for coffee drinkers. Ethiopia dominates coffee consumption in East Africa, with more than 40% share of the African total consumption. Historically, coffee has been viewed as a cash crop in Africa and consumption remains low. However, since 2014, the demand for coffee in both East and West African domestic markets has risen significantly.
Millions of People Are Employed in the Coffee Industry
As mentioned earlier, the coffee sector in East Africa is quickly growing in prominence and is expected to continue growing at this rate. Currently, more than 22 million people in East African countries are directly employed in the coffee industry. Perhaps this has a lot to do with the fact that agriculture makes up for more than 30% of all economic activity in the East African region. But let’s not forget, the native origin of coffee is believed to be Ethiopia, which means they have been doing this for centuries!
Home to Some of the Finest Coffee Beans
East Africa is home to several of the finest coffee beans in the world. From the Robusta variety to Arabica coffee beans, you will find them all in East Africa. Most of these varieties are rare and exported to several countries around the world, which is perhaps one of the main reasons why East Africa’s coffee sector is growing in prominence, not only domestically but also internationally!