Organic Congo Beans: SOPACDI Co-Operative

D.R Congo map  showing coffee growing regions and altitude. North Kivu, coffee growers

  • Country:   DR Congo
  • Region:     North Kivu
  • Farm:    Various  smallholder  farmers 
  • Variety:  Bourbon, local derivatives
  • Altitude:   1460–2000 masl
  • Process/Method:  Washed 

 DR Congo coffee producers at a co-operative coffee station sorting coffee berries.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo 'DRC' (not to be confused with neighboring Republic of the Congo) is an interesting origin just barely on the radar of specialty coffee.

An emphasis on high-quality Arabica coffee is just gaining a foothold among producers here, as until recently a long  established Robusta economy has been more prevalent.

The country itself is the fourth most-heavily populated on the continent, and is the second-largest nation in Africa as well. Despite the high population, resources such as roads, potable water, and electricity are scarce.

DR Congo coffee growers washing coffee berries

SOPACDI (Solidarité Paysanne pour la Promotion des Actions Café et Development Intégral) is an organisation comprising of more than 5,600 farmers, roughly 20 percent of whom are women, located near Lake Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 Joachim Munganga, founded SOPACDI in 2003 by restoring a washing station in the area, providing service and market access to the growers in these extremely remote highlands. Before he undertook this work, farmers had little to no means to transport coffee to the markets, and instead were forced to simply barter their coffee locally for food, clothing, and necessities. The cooperative was the first to achieve Fair Trade certification in Congo, and the coffee also carries organic certification. 

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D.R Congo

Political & economic unrest over the past few decades has made speciality coffee growing & sourcing a challenge.  But projects, organizations & cooperatives such as SOPACDI, are actively working to improve networks & infrastructure to bring top-quality lots to the international market.


Coffee is grown in most of the country, spread throughout its seven provinces, & is a significant cash crop (although most of what is grown & exported is either full Robusta or not speciality quality). 

However, investment projects & direct-sourcing projects are contributing to a general increase in profile & availability of speciality coffees, so the next few years look very hopeful for Congolese coffees.


Our supplier & the Democratic  Republic Of Congo:

"We love coffees from the growing regions around Lake Kivu, Burundi, Rwanda, & Democratic Republic of Congo. We find that despite the relatively close geographical area, the lake & its surrounding landscape has an incredible diversity of microclimate & profile. 

As a result, Congolese coffees are distinct, & among our favorites from this area of the world. 

The lots we buy from SOPACDI are 'standouts' on our offerings sheet. We have been able to source more & more coffee from them every year, with an eye toward a future of microlot & other projects for quality development."


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Growing Regions - Ituri, Nord-Kivu, Sud-Kivu


Common Varieties - Bourbon, Bourbon Mayaguez, other Bourbon derivatives


Processing Method/s - Washed


Harvest Period - March–July (main); September–January (fly)