French missionaries brought the coffee plant to Kenya in 1893. In comparison to the neighbouring country Ethiopia, Kenya started cultivating coffee relatively late. However, the country's production developed rather quickly. Already in the early thirties the auction system, which is valid till today, was introduced and also Kenya's grading system exists since 1935 and has led to a general increase in quality.
Kenya's coffee is mainly grown in the central highlands at the foot of Mount Kenya. In the crop year 2017/18, the country produced a total of 0.8 million 60kg bags of green coffee, most of which was exported abroad. Only 50,000 bags were consumed domestically.
Many high-quality coffees come from small-scale farmers who belong to larger cooperatives or societies and have their own washing stations. Thus, traceability is often guaranteed up to the producer.
Agriculture is an important cornerstone for the population. Kenya's agriculture is increasingly suffering as a result of the growing population and the effects of climate change. Only 15-17% of the country are fertile and supplied with sufficient rain, even only 7-8% are considered first-class agriculture. A modernisation of agriculture is probably inevitable.