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Espresso manufacturing in Guinea – Good Every day Grind

The Republic of Guinea (also called Guinea) is a West African nation which borders a number of nations, together with Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau, Senegal, Mali, Liberia, and Côte d’Ivoire

Though it’s not at all a well-liked espresso origin, Guinea produces vital volumes of robusta – that means espresso is a crucial money crop for the nation’s financial system.

Within the 2015/16 harvest interval, the USA Division of Agriculture reported that Guinea’s manufacturing of robusta peaked at 280,000 60kg baggage.

Nonetheless, following a devastating Ebola outbreak between 2014 and 2016 in West Africa, greater than 2,300 deaths have been recorded in Guinea alone. Moreover, years of political instability and low espresso costs have additionally stored manufacturing volumes low, with some Guinean farmers abandoning espresso manufacturing altogether. However lately, a number of initiatives have launched within the nation that are targeted on reviving its espresso sector.

To seek out out extra in regards to the potential of Guinea’s espresso sector, I spoke with two native business consultants. Learn on to be taught extra.

You may additionally like our information to the espresso sector in Côte d’Ivoire.

Green coffee beans in the plantation of Oque Daniel in the Island of Principe, Gulf of Guinea

An outline of espresso manufacturing in Guinea

In 2020, Guinea was the world’s Thirty fourth-largest producer of espresso. Whereas the volumes of espresso it grows could also be negligible on a worldwide scale, it’s an vital crop for most of the nation’s farmers.

Espresso is grown in 15 areas throughout the nation, together with the Fouta Djallon plateau, the Ziama Massif nature reserve, and the land surrounding Mount Nimba.

Aboubacar Diallo is a espresso producer and an entrepreneur from Guinea. He says that each his father and grandfather have been additionally espresso farmers.

He explains that almost all espresso farmers within the nation are smallholders who personal 1ha or much less of land. Lots of them face challenges with low yields and low costs.

The overwhelming majority of espresso grown in Guinea is robusta, though it’s believed that there are a number of farms which additionally develop arabica, however solely on a really small scale. In line with the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from growing nations (CBI), arabica was first launched to the nation sooner or later within the early-to-mid 1900s, however cultivation was comparatively unsuccessful.

A number of stories declare that sure robusta species are native to Guinea, corresponding to Espresso mauritania, Coffea stenophylla, and Coffea liberica. The truth is, one robusta selection generally known as Ziama-Macenta has obtained a geographical indication for its prime quality and fascinating qualities, with some espresso professionals claiming it tastes just like some arabica varieties.

Nonetheless, Aboubacar tells me that Ziama-Macenta is usually a low-yielding selection.

“It’s a high-quality robusta, however the area it’s grown in is unable to fill even two containers throughout a harvest season due to low manufacturing volumes,” he says.

Antoine Togbodouno is a sustainability and group group chief based mostly within the nation’s capital of Conakry. He explains that low espresso yields are a widespread downside in Guinea.

“Espresso is essential to Guinea, but it surely primarily grows in forested areas,” he says. “A couple of farmer teams have fashioned to develop manufacturing volumes and set up higher advertising and marketing, however these are few and much between.”

He provides that many farmers don’t see rising espresso as a precedence, that means that some espresso producers are left with little alternative however to kind small organisations to obtain extra assist.


Harvest season sometimes runs from September to the top of January. Nonetheless, there are few high quality management techniques in place, as farmers usually decide each ripe and unripe cherries and course of them collectively.

“Though espresso high quality will be good in Guinea, farmers want to know extra about finest farming practices,” Antoine says.

Many producers don’t have entry to acceptable drying beds, which signifies that cherries are sometimes left to dry on patios. This could result in the espresso taking over undesirable earthy qualities as soon as processed, if farmers aren’t cautious.

“After harvesting, many farmers don’t perform any sort of processing,” Antoine tells me. “Usually, they solely dry the cherries after which promote them to patrons, who will then additionally promote the espresso to different patrons for additional processing.”

A coffee house in Boke, Guinea

The place does Guinean espresso find yourself?

The overwhelming majority of Guinea’s espresso is exported. On account of a proper lack of finest practices for harvesting and processing, many Guinean producers obtain very low costs for his or her espresso.

“There may be little or no formally-certified specialty espresso in Guinea,” Aboubacar says. “There may be potential with the Ziama-Macenta selection, however there are a number of monetary and technical obstacles to enhance high quality.”

As soon as espresso is transported to cities – sometimes Macenta, which is near the border with Liberia – overseas patrons buy it from native brokers. The espresso is then sorted and undergoes minor processing in order that it’s extra appropriate and steady for export. 

Lastly, the espresso is distributed to warehouses – most of that are situated in Conakry – earlier than it’s exported. A number of the greatest export markets for Guinean espresso are Algeria, Morocco, and Senegal, with Holland, Germany, France, Belgium, and Italy additionally shopping for smaller volumes.

Nonetheless, there are additionally claims that as a result of Guinea’s manufacturing volumes are so low, a few of its exported espresso may very well be from Cote d’Ivoire – indicating a higher lack of traceability throughout the availability chain.


For essentially the most half, Guinea is a tea-drinking nation. A lot of the nation’s tea is imported from Sri Lanka. Nonetheless, regardless of this, espresso consumption remains to be seemingly rising – even whether it is at a relatively gradual tempo.

“Folks purchase on the spot espresso drinks from roadside kiosks,” Antoine explains. “In espresso retailers, individuals are likely to drink black espresso.”

He provides that it’s extra widespread for males to go to espresso retailers than ladies, which could be due to a variety of sociocultural conventions that are nonetheless distinguished within the nation.

Antoine says that in Lélouma, a city in west-central Guinea, increasingly more espresso bars are opening.

“They’re used as areas for individuals to socialize and focus on sure matters, together with politics and sports activities,” he explains.

There may be additionally a rising variety of extra “formal” espresso retailers in Conakry, together with Café Monts Nimba which roasts locally-grown arabica and robusta. 

Nonetheless, Aboubacart tells me that there are few espresso roasters in Guinea. Furthermore, he says that there aren’t any formally-trained baristas within the nation.

“I wish to discover ways to be an expert barista,” he says. “I wish to serve 100% Guinean espresso and introduce extra individuals to the nation’s espresso.”

A man brews coffee on the side of the road in Guinea

Addressing the challenges

There’s little doubt that Guinea’s espresso sector faces a big variety of challenges. One of the distinguished points is a scarcity of farmer organisations.

“There must be extra assist to organise producers into organisations or co-operatives to allow them to develop espresso collectively,” Antoine explains. “Producers additionally want seeds to plant in nurseries to allow them to exchange ageing timber.

“Technical help can also be essential,” he provides. “We want extra formal coaching on how you can finest plant seeds and maximise yields.”

Aboubacar agrees, saying that the shortage of espresso co-operatives and organisations means there’s little incentive for farmers to ask for a lot wanted assist. 

Moreover, a definite lack of standardised high quality management signifies that producers will proceed to expertise low yields and low costs.

Nonetheless, Aboubacar says that a number of years in the past, the then-president of the nation proposed an initiative to revive arabica manufacturing in northern Guinea – which has an identical local weather to the highlands of Kenya and Ethiopia. 

Whereas some seeds have been imported from Rwanda, there was little progress made with boosting Guinea’s arabica manufacturing. Furthermore, the nation’s Ebola Restoration Plan targeted considerably on rising total espresso manufacturing, however efforts have been largely unsuccessful thus far.

Aboubacar says he isn’t notably optimistic about the way forward for the nation’s espresso sector. 

“If situations don’t enhance, I anticipate that manufacturing volumes will proceed to lower through the years as a result of farmers have gotten much less concerned with rising espresso,” he tells me. “It’s quite a lot of exhausting work with few rewards, together with low costs.”

Coffee cherries dry on patios

Following years of political instability and the devastating Ebola outbreak, Guinea’s espresso sector continues to battle. Whereas there’s actually potential for it to develop bigger volumes of higher-quality espresso (together with arabica), a scarcity of sufficient authorities oversight, agricultural finest practices, and high quality management means extra assist is important.

Finally, there must be extra emphasis on forming espresso co-operatives and organisations to strengthen the nation’s espresso sector, but it surely’s evident that these efforts will take a while.

Loved this? Then learn our article exploring espresso manufacturing in Ghana.

Good Every day Grind

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