It’s International Coffee Day! This year, The International Coffee Organisation (ICO) has announced that ‘Coffee’s Next Generation’ is the focus of the day for 2020.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a global health crisis with extreme economic consequences that has also created an unprecedented situation in the coffee sector, negatively impacting both supply and demand in parallel for the first time. Even before COVID-19, farmers were already struggling due to low coffee prices and global and environmental challenges and threats.
In light of the cumulative effects of the coffee price crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic, not only is there a serious threat to the livelihoods of coffee farmers today but also a dramatic risk to the future of coffee tomorrow. An increasing number of young people in coffee-farming households are moving away from ‘the family business’ to other locations and jobs that they see as more progressive and lucrative for their future. Furthermore, many of the jobs often held by young people across the coffee value chain have recently been lost.
International Coffee Day is an occasion that is used to promote and celebrate coffee as one of the most beloved beverages. It is also an opportunity to promote sustainable coffee practices and to raise awareness for the plight of coffee growers.
This October 1st, the International Coffee Organisation is launching ‘Coffee’s Next Generation’, a global initiative targeting talented and motivated young people and entrepreneurs in the coffee sector.
Investing in youth will generate both innovative and sustainable solutions for the coffee sector, contributing to build back a better, more equitable and prosperous coffee sector, enabling recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and building a stronger future, positively impacting coffee communities around the world. It will also mitigate the lack of engagement of youth in coffee farming and other areas of the value chain.
To enable these young women and men to build a prosperous and sustainable future, this initiative intends to provide them with access to finance and knowledge, skills development, coaching and training as well as networking.
‘Coffee’s Next Generation’ is intended to engage ICO Members and all coffee stakeholders to work together with youth organizations, industry leaders and associations, international organizations, development and financial partners and coffee consumers, to invest in the youth and bring to life their innovative ideas and enthusiasm to benefit the whole coffee community and to recover from the pandemic building a more prosperous future.
The ICO calls on the global coffee community, all the stakeholders and the millions of coffee consumers and lovers to celebrate coffee and to contribute to building Coffee’s Next Generation.