NUCAFE’s 2005 target was to organise and train 5,000 smallholder coffee farmers into 160 groups. The actual results saw more than 18,000 farmers in 16 districts organised into 600 groups averaging 30 members each. The farmers who choose to work with NUCAFE are committed to adopting good agricultural practices, accessing training and producing coffee of uniform quality that meets market needs.
In 2005, NUCAFE also substantially increased the number of marketing associations formed by its members, from 60 to 102. The associations bulk the coffee for processing, access market and price information, and sell the coffee at a negotiable price. The sale proceeds are paid directly to each group at its local village bank account. The associations, which are based at sub-county level, also coordinate farmers’ access to inputs, appropriate technologies, training, information and credit.
In terms of marketing, the amount of coffee sold directly to buyers through the NUCAFE system went from 69 metric tons in 2004 to 125 metric tons the following year, with 25 metric tons sold through warehouse receipt systems and 9 metric tons through the Commodity Exchange in Kampala. Through improved quality, value addition in form of minimal processing ad by negotiating directly with buyers, prices obtained by farmers increased. The change was dramatic, from Uganda shillings 300 (Euro cents 30) for 2 kg of dry unprocessed coffee cherries (kiboko) to as much as 2000 (euro 1.00) per kilogram of Fair Average Quality.
With the support of coffee support network of solidaridad, NUCAFE has provided Kibinge Coffee Farmers Association with technical assistance seeing Kibinge in the final stages to complete the implementation of Utz Kapeh compliance and certification.
NUCAFE has successfully used partnerships to increase the impact of its highly effective empowerment model, which provides farmers with knowledge , capacity for attitudinal change and skills that they themselves can control their own future and build sustainable businesses within the value chain. From 2005, NUCAFE has entered into public-Private Partnership with key Government of Uganda agencies such as the National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) and Coffee Research Institute (CORI). At the international Level, NUCAFE has strong partnership with IFAP, AGRICORD, IVA, Solidaridad with Coffee Support Network, Utz Kapeh Foundation, CIRAD, which is a French research agency, Oxfam and the Global Alliance on Coffee and other Commodities (GLACC). NUCAFE is the coordinating focal point for GLACC Africa chapter.
To NUCAFE, coffee is used as an entry point and an integral part of other enterprises in the farming system. To this end, NUCAFE is also involved in Cocoa and Macadamia, providing coffee farmers with diversified sources of income in form of risk management.