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Coffee Lifeline connects farmers in Rwanda

From the May 2014 issue.

Peter Kettler is engaging the services of a local radio station to provide coffee farmers with information on the coffee market.

While working as a coffee trader more than a decade ago, Peter Kettler heard a story that disturbed him.

Farmers in Ethiopia were being cheated by buyers on the ground, who were tricking the farmers into selling for much lower than they should have been because they had no access to information about the international prices being paid for their crops.

“In a world where we are so connected and information moves so freely, it was just ridiculous that they could get away with that,” Kettler says now.

It was around that time that Kettler became aware of an organisation in South Africa called Lifeline Energy, which was distributing solar and crank powered radios to communities as a way of improving communications and empowering people on the ground.

These two pieces of information spurred Kettler into action, and in 2004 he set about raising the money to buy some of these radios for coffee farmers in Rwanda.

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