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Burundi Kayanza Gakenke - Washed Bourbon

Burundi Kayanza Gakenke - Washed Bourbon

Regular price $15.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $15.00 USD
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WASHING STATION NAME: GAKENKE
CLOSEST TOWN: GATARA
REGION: KAYANZA
ALTITUDE (MASL): 1600-1800
PICKING: MANUAL
CULTIVAR: BOURBON
PROCESS: WASHED
FERMENTATION TIME: 10-12HRS
DRYING NOTES: RAISED BEDS, 21-28 DAYS

Notes: Black Currant, Plum, and Honeysuckle

All coffee trees in Burundi are Red Bourbon, which is tightly controlled by the government for reasons of quality. Because of the increasingly small size of coffee plantings, aging rootstock is a very big issue in Burundi. Many farmers have trees that are over 50 years old, but with small plots to farm, it is difficult to justify taking trees entirely out of production for the 3-4 years it will take new plantings to begin to yield.
Despite the ubiquity of coffee growing in Burundi, each smallholder producers a relatively small harvest. The average smallholder has approximately 250 trees, normally in their backyards. Each tree yields an average of 1.5 kilos of cherry so the
average producer sells about 200-300 kilos of cherry annually.
Quality assurance begins as soon as farmers deliver their cherry. All cherry is floated in small buckets as a first step to check its quality. After floating, the higher quality
cherry is sorted again by hand to remove all damaged, underripe and overripe cherries.
After sorting, the beans are then transported directly to the drying tables where they will dry slowly for 3-4 weeks. Cherry is laid out in a single layer. Pickers go over the drying beans for damaged or defective beans that may have been missed in previous quality checks. The central washing station is very strict about allowing only the highest quality cherry to complete the drying process. The beans are covered with tarps during periods of rain, the hottest part of the day and at night. On the table, the beans are dried to 11.5%.
Once dry, the coffee is then bagged and taken to the warehouse. The traceability of the station and quality is maintained throughout the entire process.
Before shipment, coffee is sent to Budeca, Burundi’s largest dry mill. The coffee is milled and then hand sorted by a team of hand-pickers who look closely at every single bean to ensure zero defects. It takes a team of two hand-pickers a full day to look over a single bag. UV lighting is also used on the beans and any beans that glows—usually an indication of a defect—is removed.

The mill produces an average of 300 containers of 320 bags per year. Budeca is located in Burundi’s new capital city, Gitega, with a population of around 30,000 people. Since there are approximately 3,000 people working at the mill, mostly as hand pickers, this means that Budeca employs nearly 10% of the total population in Gitega for at least half the year (during the milling season). The same is true in the provinces of Ngozi and Kayanza, where Greenco and Bugestal are the first
employers in the region during the coffee harvest season. This has an incalculable
impact on a country like Burundi, with unemployment rates above 50%, especially in
rural areas and among young people.
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