A new coffee roasting company hoping to expand the value added export market was inaugurated on Thursday April 3. Melange Coffee Roasters Plc established by two Ethiopian investors has been roasting and grinding coffee for the past several months. Yet, they have received 5,000 tones of orders from Europe and Asia and other countries. So far they have invested three million birr and they are in the process of undergoing a two million birr expansion. The company’s founders say they have already ordered more machines to handle the extra business.
Solomon Kasa along with Andualem Mulugeta owns Melange Coffee. Solomon has management experience at the giant US coffee retailer Starbucks.
“We have also a plan to change the local market with a standard domestic brand,” Solomon told Capital.
They plan to promote their coffee at local cafés and hotels and give samples to potential buyers, hoping to establish themselves in the local market.
To be successful on the global stage they have imported new machines and studied the international market.
“Our samples for export have been highly accepted in the US, Europe and Asia,” said Solomon. Many of their orders have come from England, Spain, Germany and Malaysia.
Roasted and ground coffee for local markets like large hotels, and hospitality facilities is another market they hope to tap. The roasting company has a capacity to export 20,000 tons of coffee.
Ethiopia is one of the major coffee exporters on the continent. Although it does not earn as much from coffee beans, when it comes to supplying high quality coffee to international suppliers it is one of the leading nations. Most exports come from green coffee beans. For the past several decades coffee has been a major source of hard currency, however there is still a lot of untapped potential when it comes to value added coffee.