I, the founder of BUSERCO, INC., was born in Burundi 56 years ago and I’ve been living in this great country since 2008; the USA, the land of the free and home of the brave which welcomes anyone who seek a home for different reasons.
I remember seeing freshly printed Burundian bills when I was in high school just before summer vacation and we knew the season of coffee was there. Everyone was happy expecting a little more financial improvement.
At the beginning of the new school year, it was apparent that some students were living a more comfortable life than they had previously. We understood they were buying coffee but tricking the weight of the coffee. The farmers couldn’t see the machination because they lacked the education needed to see even a simple trickery like that. This was shocking because it was stealing.
Nowadays, the coffee sector is reorganized and privatized. Many associations and cooperatives have been created in order to protect the farmers’ rights. The buyers also seek or pretend to improve the farmers’ lives. In short, everybody in the sector claim the improvement of the farmers’ lives is a priority but, it’s obvious this objective is far from being reached. The farmers are almost as poor as they were when I was in high school; in fact, I’d say even more so. As a result, some farmers are tempted to replace it with other plants even when coffee was supposed to be more profitable than other plants the country has to offer.
I know Burundi and the ways of its people and I want to help the farmers. It is not normal that when the buyer of the product is willing to help, somehow, the result doesn’t reach the farmers.
We like talking about farmers, but in Burundi, those who cultivate coffee have a few number of trees, less than 200 and cultivate also other plants. Our objective is to organize farmers and help them understand necessary rules of administrative and financial management.
And last but not least, help farmers understand the long term effect of how we leave and work on our environment. The decisions we make today will have an impact on the future generations, so we ought to proceed cautiously.
In Kirundi, there’s an old saying: “foolish is the one who cuts the branch he sits on.”
"When you buy Burundian Coffee, you buy quality and YOU partner in caring for people in the poorest country in the world.”