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Caffeine Diplomacy: Nestle to Bring Cuban Coffee to US

June 20, 2016
The Swiss food giant plans to sell Cuban coffee under its individual-capsule Nespresso brand, initially as a limited edition, starting in several months.

NEW YORK—Nestle announced on Monday it will reintroduce Cuban coffee to the U.S. for the first time in more than 50 years following the easing of United States sanctions on Cuba.

The Swiss food giant plans to sell Cuban coffee under its individual-capsule Nespresso brand, initially as a limited edition, starting in several months. 

"Nespresso is thrilled to be the first to bring this rare coffee to the U.S., allowing consumers to rediscover this distinct coffee profile," said Guillaume Le Cunff, president of Nespresso USA, in a statement.

"Ultimately, we want consumers in the U.S. to experience this incredible coffee and to enjoy it now and for years to come."

A spokesman for Nestle said the coffee has "wood notes" and a "light caramel finish." 

In April, the U.S. Department of State in April updated its list of goods that could be imported into the US from Cuba to include coffee.

Nestle said it planned to work with the nonprofit development organization TechnoServe to establish financing and technical assistance to improve sustainable practices among Cuban coffee farmers.

Nestle's announcement comes as more US businesses, including film producers, hotel chains and cruise companies, take steps to reenter Cuba following a series of moves by the Obama administration to ease the U.S. trade embargo.

The United States and Cuba restored diplomatic relations in July 2015. 

On June 10, the US Department of Transportation granted licenses to six U.S. airlines to fly up to 90 round-trip flights per day to cities in Cuba, excluding the capital Havana.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2016.

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