Our Partners

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

With over 425 scientists, Kew’s mission is to understand and protect plants and fungi for the well-being of people and the future of all life on Earth.

Kew Science is growing rapidly and attracting unprecedented success with new grants and record levels of published research. Kew Science currently has 500 employees and more than 150 post-graduate students.

Our scholarships

  • The Emily Holmes Memorial Scholarship - Small awards to 5 or 6 PhD or MSc students
  • Research grant - the effect of climate change on coffee growing
  • Diploma in Horticulture

Future-proofing coffee: climate, nature, people

The project ‘Future-proofing coffee: climate, nature, people’ was established in 2016, to improve our understanding of climate risk for coffee farming and wild coffee species, and to support coffee sustainability in a changing world.

Much attention is focused on understanding coffee diversity for developing new climate resilient coffee crops. Five alternative coffee crop species have been studied so far, including the rare Highland Coffee of Sierra Leone (Coffea stenophylla), noted for having a flavour like Arabica coffee (C. arabica) but being able to withstand much higher temperatures as well as long dry periods.

Other activities supported by the Trust include climate response field trials, DNA sampling, biodiversity surveys, climate data analysis, and plant breeding.

The Amar-Franses & Foster-Jenkins Trust (the Trust) has contributed to research undertaken in three African countries, Madagascar, and the UK. Initial activities were focused on climate-smart coffee farming in Ethiopia, to quantify the influence of agronomy practices on soil moisture and other key environmental variables. The approaches and technologies used were then developed and extended for work in other parts of Ethiopia and elsewhere.

Since 2016 the Trust has supported the research activities of six researchers in Africa, and two in the UK. It is the sole supporter of Malagasy PhD student Voaharinantenaina Andriamanisa (Voahary). Voahary is studying the climate diversity of wild Madagascan coffee species, as well as climate suitability for Arabica and robusta farming in Madagascar.

The Trust’s funds have also contributed to the publication of a number of research papers.

Dr Aaron Davis