SUGGESTED BREWING METHOD:
-Alternative brewing methods (V60, Kalita Wave Dripper, Chemex, Aeropress, French Press)
location: Kirinyaga, Embu
producer: Ngariama Cooperative
variety: Ruiru 11, SL-28, SL-34, Batian
altitude (MASL): 1.800
Ngariama Cooperative in Kirinyaga currently brings together about 3000 smallholder producers. Farmers are supported and educated on the work efficiency and the quality of crops, which includes even trimming coffee trees. Cooperative is known for giving a profit towards the farmers, supporting local school and education as well as funding all needs it requires.
Mill Kamwangi, where our coffee comes from, is one of the three mills owned and run by this cooperative. All farms put together make up for 250 coffee trees and each one of them, only when it’s ready is harvested by hand. After picking, coffee is transported to the mill on the same day, where it’s manually sorted before it’s ready for the further processing. Farmers also get a cash deposit for all fruits delivered and the rest of the salary is paid after coffee gets sold.
Processing starts from removing the skin and the pulp in the machine, and then the first step of fermentation starts in covered concrete pods, which allows farmers to control and supervise the temperature inside. This fermentation process takes from 18 to 36 hours. During the next step coffee is washed with water that comes from a nearby river and it usually lasts a whole night. Then coffee is dried on sun, on risen platforms or so called African Beds, and depending on the weather this step will last between 12 to 20 days. To control the drying process, around noon, when the sun is the greatest, and also during night, coffee gets covered with plastic sheets.
In all mills run by Ngariama Cooperative water that is used in the coffee processing is filtered and used again to water the coffee trees, reducing water waste to minimum.