Cameroon Boyo Hills

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Cameroon Boyo coffee direct from the Boyo Hills in Western Cameroon, near the town of Bamenda. From around 5,000 ft elevation, high grade Arabica beans are nurtured by caring farmers keen to maintain high quality and develop direct trade relationships. 

These beans are medium-roasted to enhance their dark chocolate and forest fruit notes with a good body. 

In Cameroon we’re working with Matti Foncha, a coffee farmer himself, he also has a role representing his region and fellow farmers to develop trading relationships in Europe and North America. In fact, Cameroon Boyo coffee is the brainchild of Matti Foncha, who brought together a group of micro-scale coffee farmers from the Boyo region located in the Northwest of Cameroon.

Traditionally, farmers from the region would have their own ways of processing their coffee and would then mix the different beans together to be able to sell in larger quantities. This led to an inferior tasting coffee. They could have opted to go down the fair trade route but instead Matti encouraged them to unite together and share both the profit and risk of their own business. 

By forming the Cameroon Boyo collective the farmers now work together to process their coffee in the same way which has drastically improved the quality and quantity of their beans. Matti now travels around the globe selling directly to companies like ours. By cutting out the middle men, farmers receive more money. They call this the “More Than Fair” system.

Despite the government trying their best, coffee production in the area has been declining for the past twenty years. However, through the collaborative trade process that Matti started, they are succeeding, which is encouraging young farmers to grow coffee. The consequence is that these farmers are overcoming poverty and creating sustainable farming for them and their families.

Not strictly farm direct by our high standards and definition but we’re working on it.  We’ve had to cancel two trips in recent years because of the on-going civil war but we remain keen to visit, and keen to support this coffee growing community. We hope and pray for a swift and peaceful resolution, for the country and it’s people. 

Right now this story, this coffee, embodies who we are as EA – despite set-backs our relationship has endured. Matti and his fellow farmers are grateful for our commitment in the face of delays, and we are humbled by that gratitude. Helpless on a grand scale the one thing we can do is remain loyal to the relationship and the business whereby they can maintain some income, and have a business to continue on when the troubles cease rather than having to start all over again. And of course it’s good coffee, no compromise.

Matti has a small company to export coffee and service the farmers but he’s a man on a mission.  He understands that business can be a tool for the greater good, and not just for selfish gain. He works tirelessly to promote sustainability in the region, develop farming and encourage fairness and quality. He is building models to hopefully secure farming and income for the next generation. 

We love this guy and his passion. We’ve been working with him since 2018 and looking forward to our ongoing relationship with him and the Boyo collective.

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“We're about transparency and relationships . . . but not the gimmicks of certification”
Matti Foncha
Farmer & Area Representative

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