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Coffee’s growth in southern Africa

From the May 2017 issue.

Southern Africa’s coffee output has slumped since 2003, but industry officials say production is set to expand in coming years.

Africa

Southern Africa’s four leading coffee nations are planning a comeback on the international stage for specialty beans.

After years of challenges, Madagascar, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe are increasing efforts to get production back on track, with production in the short to medium term likely to recover to between 800,000 and 1 million bags.

This comes at a time when the world market has seen the supply of top quality Arabica coffee cut back in most key coffee producing nations as a result of years with poor prices and bad weather.

From the lush mountains in northern Malawi’s famous Mzuzu coffee region to Zimbabwe’s western Chimanimani region on the border with Mozambique, across the green valleys of both northern and south-eastern Zambia, coffee plantings are coming back – in part, local officials say, because the emerging local coffee culture has sparked renewed political interest in a sector that just a decade ago was given short odds at survival in this region.

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