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Olam Acquires Longtime East African Coffee Specialist Schluter


Olam Coffee parent company Olam International Limited has acquired the full interest in longtime East African-focused UK coffee company Schluter S.A., valued at approximately $7.5 million USD, according to the companies.

Schluter has been a family-owned independent coffee company since its founding in 1856, focused on the coffee trade throughout Africa, with a particular focus on arabica coffees in East African origins. The acquisition includes Schluter’s offices in Switzerland and in the UK, as well as milling facilities in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi.

In an announcement of the acquisition, Olam noted that Schluter also runs certified organic farmer support programs, funded by European development agencies, involving six nurseries and some 1,800 farmers.

“Schluter’s name has been synonymous with fine coffees out of East Africa for generations; and their focus on building sustainable supply chains with smallholders is strongly aligned to our core purpose of growing responsibly,” said Vivek Verma, CEO of Olam Coffee.

In the announcement, Olam suggested the Olam Coffee division has a new European specialty arm with the acquisition of Schluter, which was one of the founding members of the Specialty Coffee Association of Europe.

“We are a company who has been passionate in the promotion of African coffees and the livelihood of the farmers who produce it,” said Schluter Managing Director Phillip Schluter, representing a sixth generation of Schluters involved with the business. “I am pleased that we have found a market leader like Olam that shares the same goals and aspirations as us in growing the specialty coffee market. As a combined business, I am confident we will be able to serve our customers and partners in many ways better than before.”

(Disclosure: Olam Specialty Coffee is a current advertising partner with Daily Coffee News.)