Trader: Nordic Approach
Altitude: 1776 meters
Process: Fully washed
Our main focus in Rwanda is on the south and western provinces.
And 80% of our coffees are coming from 4 producers we have a close relationship with.
But sometimes there’s just this PB lot that stands out on terms of cupprofile and price.
Which gives us a chance to showcase a range of lots all over Rwanda and the Bushoki lot from the Rulindo district in the north made that selection on the table.
A great heavy parfummy PB that stood out.
Communal Smallholder Farmers:
Bushoki is a washing station in the Northern Province of Rulindo, and is situated at 1776 masl, while the 800 farmers from the surrounding sectors who deliver their cherry here fall in a range of altitudes.
The Inyongers Cooperative built the washing station in 2006, but in 2013 they decided they were not being managed very well when they experienced some financial difficulties. Hence the Bushoki washing station was rented to a private investor.
Picking and selection
The season for Rwanda can run from March through to August, but for the most part we are finding our selections coming from May to July picking of cherry. This can always shift a little depending on the weather and the altitude the coffee is being grown at.
Farms are generally very small, families that are having some land with coffee trees and who take care of the plants and pick the cherries themselves. Usually they will also have some subsistence farming, there are occasionally farmers with more land.
There 800 smallholder farmers in the surrounding communities around Bushoki that deliver their cherry to the washing station for processing.
Competition for cherry can be pretty tough, farmers can deliver to whichever washing station they want. Maintaining a good supply of cherry is dependent on the relationships with farmers and being able to offer competitive pricing, his roots and history in this community helps strengthen these relationships.
They have very strict routines for cherry reception and sorting, cherry delivered by farmers must be sorted by the farmers themselves, if this is not done sufficiently there are staff who will do further sorting. The cherry are placed in a tank prior to pulping where floaters are removed, all of the cherry sorted out that is unripe’s or over ripe’s will be processed separately as lower grade coffee.
Fermentation, washing and drying
The climate through most of the season in Rwanda is relatively cool, which assists in controlling the fermentation process. A McKinnon three-disc pulper is used here to remove the skin and pulp from the parchment which is still covered in mucilage. The coffee is then wet fermented for 18-24 hours. After this the parchment dried on raised beds, at Bushoki there are 42 drying beds.
The parchment is dried on African drying beds for between 15-22 days, the parchment is covered by shade net during midday intense sun, during any rain and at night.