Mr. Thu Zaw, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SITHAR Coffee Company which is a well established leading grower, processor and roaster of quality coffee in Myanmar visited National Tea and Coffee Development Board.

SITHAR coffee company has been operating since 1996 in order to increase income for coffee farmers and upgrade their living standards while raising the quality of Myanmar coffee in International stage.

During his meeting with various representatives from Beautiful Coffee Nepal, Nepal Coffee Association, Trade and Private Sector Development and NTCDB officials, Mr. Zaw pointed out that coffee sector in Myanmar was neglected at the initial stage. Only after 2016, Myanmar coffee made a huge leap, creating a good status in Global market. As demand of coffee from Myanmar is growing in International market, number of small and large scale coffee growing farmers has also increased reaching 70% of the total population with annual coffee production of 2000 metric tons. He also stated that Panama model of coffee production is famous in Myanmar and he feels that Brazilian model should also be taken into consideration if we want to fit into the Global demand.

He also described problem of not being able to produce and supply single variety coffee beans by Myanmar because all the varieties are mixed up and their varietal identification has become difficult subject matter. This is also one of the dire conditions in coffee sector of many countries including Nepal. He also elucidated that Coffee Research Station in Myanmar is conducting various research programs regarding varietal identification, development, pest and diseases control measures and others. According to Mr. Zaw 100-150 coffee varietals are being researched so far.

At the end of the meeting Mr. Zaw proposed for collaboration of research with Nepal. The Coffee Research Station of Myanmar can consider Nepal as “on farm trial region” where plantation along with test of varietals brought from Myanmar can be done. Myanmar is a pioneer country from where first coffee seeds were brought by a hermit named Hira Giri and planted for the first time in Nepal. Thus, a relationship of this kind will help flourish the Myanmar-Nepal relationship in stronger manner.