For Immediate Release
July 17, 2019
Yangon – Thanks to a partnership with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), local coffee producers have entered the multi-billion dollar international specialty coffee market and are now providing locally-produced world class coffee to more consumers in Myanmar and to export markets, including in the United States. Today USAID Mission Director Teresa McGhie joined the Myanmar Coffee Association to celebrate the exponential private sector growth in Myanmar’s coffee industry, bringing together eleven Myanmar coffee roasters with more than 30 buyers from Yangon hotel restaurants to facilitate business deals that further promote local Myanmar coffee.
USAID has supported Myanmar Coffee Association (MCA) since 2013. Ms. McGhie recognized the remarkable achievements MCA has made in advancing both commercial-grade and specialty coffee production and processing. MCA now manages cupping events, quality training and other technical assistance to coffee farmers and roasters, and hosts promotional business-to-business events that help coffee roasters sell more coffee for Myanmar consumers and for export. Thanks to the partnership with USAID, MCA, and $1 million in loans from Myanmar’s private sector banks, more than 8,000 farmers have adopted new technologies that have enabled them to produce more and higher quality coffee which wins awards at international cupping competitions.
“USAID and the American people are proud of the contributions Myanmar’s private enterprises in the specialty coffee sector are making. As these private enterprises grow, more people will benefit from economic development. Ultimately, that means Myanmar’s economy will be more self-reliant,” said McGhie. “Myanmar Coffee Association brings together coffee growers and processors in ten coffee clusters, demonstrating that Myanmar people can work together across regions and ethnic groups to improve coffee production, enhance Myanmar’s reputation on the global market, and stimulate inclusive economic growth.”
The U.S. Embassy, through the $27 million USAID Value Chains for Rural Development activity and other efforts, is dedicated to promoting Myanmar’s transition to a more inclusive and open economy, while increasing bilateral trade and investment. This activity also works with farmers and processors in the ginger, soy, melon, and sesame sectors.