The nonprofit international development organization TechnoServe has announced the appointment of Paul Stewart to the new position of global coffee director.
Through his years at TechnoServe, Stewart has devoted the bulk of his efforts to work in the coffee sector in East Africa, serving as regional director of the Coffee Initiative, which launched in 2008 and according to the organization’s own monitoring helped thousands of smallholder farmers in Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania develop their business, access financing, improve quality and access better markets for their coffees.
“Over the course of a 14-year career at TechnoServe, Stewart has helped build its coffee practice into a recognized leader in ‘shared value’ solutions that reduce poverty for farmers while developing sustainable supply chains for coffee businesses,” TechnoServe said in an announcement of Stewart’s appointment today. “Stewart has contributed to numerous coffee best practices: creating a low-cost wet mill business plan that has been replicated across East Africa and beyond; pioneering a new model for coffee exporters to provide credit and marketing services to wet mills; and leading TechnoServe’s East Africa coffee portfolio to more than $7 million worth of projects benefiting over a quarter million smallholder coffee farmers across five countries.”
While TechnoServe is involved in development initiatives in numerous primarily agricultural sectors in some 30 countries throughout the world, coffee has been one of the organization’s biggest tools in business development for farmers.
“The coffee sector’s potential to improve incomes for millions of smallholder farmers makes it a critical piece of TechnoServe’s mission to create business solutions to poverty,” TechnoServe President and CEO William Warshauer said in the announcement of the new position. “We are fortunate to have someone with Paul’s deep industry knowledge and experience to carry this work forward into the future.”