Coffee fields. Photo: iStock.
Coffee fields. Photo: iStock.

A geothermal energy company has set out to assist rural coffee farmers in Indonesian villages.

PT Supreme Energy Rantau Dedap, with financial backing from the Asian Development Bank (ADB), has been assisting South Sumatra coffee farmers near the new geothermal power plant they are building, Reuters reported.

According to ADB and PT Supreme Energy staff, they have recently been linking local coffee farmers with buyers such as PT Fortunium, Rumah Kopi Ranin and Indokom. ADB’s Viswanathan Ramasubramanian said that, as a result, the coffee is reaching out to an international market.

Ramasubramanian added that local livelihoods can be improved if the coffee quality attracts high-powered buyers.

The geothermal company bought 309 acres of land from 150 households to make way for the geothermal plant. After that, the company bought land nearby to farm coffee. Not only that, two years ago Supreme Energy and ADB brought in expert advisers and provided training boost yields. As a result, the annual coffee bean production for farmers participating in the training has doubled.

The South Sumatran coffee-growing community is heavily matrilineal, with women playing a controlling role in the enterprise. The reins of every family’s coffee assets are passed down to the firstborn daughter.

Apart from boosting coffee yield, the project also helped form women’s groups in a number of villages and offered tech and equipment to assist operations regarding the coffee products.