A Look Inside The Lives of Coffee Farmers In Uganda

NPR recently posted an original piece (see their full story here) that was essentially a photo diary of Ugandan farmers.

The Ugandan farmers were given cameras, despite never having used them before, and then NPR came back later to see what photos they would have taken.  This gave quite the inside look that they likely would not have received if they approached the situation the way most journalists do.

Uganda is not big on the international coffee scene.  This makes the hit that coffee farmers are taking all the more difficult for these Ugandans.

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If you look closely on the right side of the block, you can see a beetle there.  This particular beetle is one of the many reasons that coffee harvesting is being hit particularly hard there.

Uganda water fetching

Even simple things like running water that we take for granted, are labored over in Uganda.  Fetching water not just for the coffee plants growing, but for the taller trees that they plant near the coffee plants to provide the coffee plants with the necessary shade.

Uganda drinking

With one picture of water coming from a larger hole, seeing this man gather water for his own drinking from this smaller dirty hole really puts things in perspective.

The craziest parts about some of these pictures are that they are not meant to be disturbing to the Ugandan farmers.  These pictures are simply a photo diary of sorts of their daily lives.

And some of the pictures are with happy smiling children and not particularly focused on their coffee farm:

Uganda kids bike

And others are of them around their homes:

Uganda woman children

or in their homes, showing off their furniture and television set:

Uganda inside home TV

It is truly an intriguing look into the lives of coffee farmers that we are oftentimes so separated from.  Lives that we likely never really considered when hitting our snooze buttons and eventually dragging ourselves out of bed to reach for our morning cup of coffee.

The coffee that is being carried by hand here:

Uganda carry coffee

Or weighed by the back of the coffee farmers’ homes:

Uganda coffee weigh

And the care that goes into growing them in the first place.  Many of these plants were said to have been planted 100+ years ago by their family.  You can see the care that goes into something as simply as weeding:

Uganda weeding

When you see these pictures, hopefully it does for you all a little bit about what it did for me.  Made me think about the work that truly goes into the coffee that many of us take for granted.  To worry a bit more about the climate that is wrecking their farms.  And to perhaps pay a bit closer attention to working directly with farmers to insure a fair trade coffee situation.

Match Made Coffee has yet to utilize a Ugandan coffee in our subscription box.  I don’t know if this should encourage us to do so, or to not do so.

What do you guys think?  Let us know here, or on Facebook.

Thanks for reading.

For the full album of 48 pictures, check it out here.

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