Qima Coffee and Alliance for Coffee Excellence announce Best of Yemen 2021 Auction
As part of the multi-year partnership between Qima Coffee and the Alliance for Coffee Excellence (ACE), the two organisations have come together again to launch the third and largest instalment of the Private Collection Auction series in Yemen; The Best of Yemen 2021. Due to the unparalleled success of the partnership over the last several years, the size and reach of the auction has grown to serve over 3,000 smallholder farmers in Qima Coffee’s network. With the aim of scaling and maximising the impact of the programme, this year’s auction will expand beyond Qima’s farmer network and will be open to participation from any and all coffee farmers of Yemen. As such, the Best of Yemen 2021 auction will act to provide market access for Yemen’s coffee farmers on a national scale.
The Private Collection Auction was established as part of ACE’s mission of rewarding exemplary coffee farmers and supporting farmer inclusion and access to premium markets. The programme was launched two years ago in Yemen in partnership with Qima Coffee to celebrate and support Yemeni coffee farmers and showcase the country’s blossoming coffee industry “This being our third edition with Qima, we are very interested in this year’s approach towards a wider array of producers and hopefully an even clearer window in which to see the extraordinary coffees from Yemen,” executive director Darrin Daniel stated.
Founder and CEO of Qima Coffee, Faris Sheibani, states: “Qima Coffee exists as a vehicle to serve Yemen’s coffee farmers, without exception. Yet practically speaking, we can only purchase so much coffee from a certain number of farmers, and whilst that number has grown exponentially over the last few years, there are still tens of thousands of Yemeni farmers who remain unserved. The Best of Yemen 2021 auction serves the much-needed purpose of providing market access to Yemen’s entire coffee farmer community. Any farmer from any community in Yemen can submit coffees for participation with equal opportunity to have their coffees amongst the winning lots. Beyond farmers, we will also offer access to Yemeni exporters with the aim of supporting small and medium businesses to reach global premium markets. The theme for our 2020 auction was centred around diversity. This year’s theme is inclusion. The auction will play a key role in promoting a more inclusive and collaborative coffee sector in Yemen.”
Founded as a social enterprise in 2016 in the midst of Yemen’s civil conflict, Qima Coffee’s core purpose is to utilise coffee as a vehicle for sustainable livelihood generation in Yemen’s rural communities. Since its inception, Qima Coffee has undergone unprecedented growth, scaling its farmer network from 30 farmers in one village, to over 3000 farmers in 55 communities across 28,000km2 of Yemen’s coffee lands.
Mocha Valley, a Yemeni quality assurance and advisory company, has been commissioned by Qima Coffee to conduct the preselection round. Hasaad, a Yemeni coffee marketing and logistics company will be providing the third party bonded warehousing services. ACE and Qima will then work together to assemble an accomplished international jury of professional sensory tasters to analyse the lots and select the winning coffees. By pinpointing exceptional producers with this programme, ACE will curate private auctions with organisations and farmers who best exemplify ACE’s standards embodying the Cup of Excellence programming.
Plans are underway for the auction to go live in August 2021. To find out more about the auction or to be involved in the historic jury, please reach out to ACE at [email protected] or to Qima at [email protected].
In line with its commitment to Yemen’s most vulnerable communities, Qima Coffee will donate 10% of the auction proceeds to the Qima Foundation’s Tomorrow’s Leaders Programme, an educational sponsorship programme that offers full scholarships into Yemen’s best schools for vulnerable children of Yemeni single mothers whose livelihoods have been affected by the conflict.