KENYA KAMUCHEGE AA
Cooperative: Komothai FCS
Washing Station: Kamuchege
Farmers: 9951 active members
Cultivar: SL28 - SL34
Altitude: 1700 - 1800 masl
Process: Fully washed with double fermentation
Harvest: November 2020 - January 2021
Cherry Price | FOB Price: No info | 9.55 USD/Kg
Screen | Moisture | Density: 17-18 | 10.1% | 0.695 g/ml
Packaging: 30 Kg + GrainPro
Notes: Apricot, anise, melon, tree tomato
Ikawa profile: KSC basic profile 50g #2
Kamuchege is a washing station or factory (as they are commonly called in Kenya), located in Kiambu county. Kiambu coffees are our favourites in Kenya, although they are not as "famous" as those from Nyeri or Kirinyaga, they always stand out with intensely sweet profiles, complex phosphoric acidity and floral notes, especially reminding us the flavour of tree tomato.
Kamuchege is one of the 13 factories organized under the Komothai FCS, where the focus is to inspire the next generation of coffee growers to take the reins of the factories and usher in a new era of innovation. This cooperative currently has 9,951 active members, who on 2,113 hectares produce a total of 172,420 kg of green coffee per year.
Factory management is essential in a system in which the harvested cherry comes from so many different small farms, hence cherry classification is the most critical variable to guarantee cup quality. Only the ripe cherries are delivered to the Kamuchege factory, where additional manual sorting and flotation is also performed to remove the less dense or damaged cherries before the coffee is pulped, fermented and washed.
After sorting, the cherries are processed using a fully washed or wet method with double fermentation. The water is pumped from the Athi River to reserve tanks for pulp and recirculation. After pulping, the coffee is dry fermented overnight, before being washed in sorting channels, then soaked for 24-48 hours in clean water and finally spread out on raised beds for sorting and sun drying.
Despite its proximity to Ethiopia, coffee was not cultivated in Kenya until 1893, when the "Fathers of the Holy Ghost" (French catholic missionaries), introduced coffee trees from Reunion Island and planted them near Mombasa.
** Interesting Fact: The Bourbon variety was first cultivated on a small island that today is known as "Reunion Island". It is located in Africa, in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar. It is considered a region of France and until 1789 its name was "Bourbon Island", in honor of the royal house of the Bourbons. **
In 1896, the first plantations were introduced in Kiambu - Kikuyu district, a very fertile area, which in 1912 already saw large plantations of several acres of expansion; there were mainly cultivated Bourbon and Mokka varieties.
While credit for the introduction of coffee in Kenya corresponds to Catholic missionaries, were the English settlers, who accelerated the importance of coffee in the Kenyan economy. Large-scale production of coffee and other crops, were heavily increased to export them into Europe, in order to pay the exorbitant debts generated by the construction of the railway connecting Uganda with the port of Mombasa in 1901.
After Kenyan independence from the British Empire in 1963, the long experience and extensive knowledge about coffee production was very well adopted by small local farmers, resulting in the high quality standards with which today Kenyan coffee is known in the world.
There are two particular varieties that attract most of the interest from specialty coffee buyers in Kenya, these are: SL 28 and SL 34.
The Scott Laboratories were hired to develop new cultivars between 1934 and 1963. The development of cultivars SL, was based on the Mokka and Bourbon varieties, which were introduced into Kenya by Scottish and French missionaries, from Yemen and Reunion Island respectively.
Today, these two varieties are responsible for most of the top quality coffees produced in Kenya, but they are susceptible to coffee leaf rust and other diseases.
Kenya has done a huge job, trying to find disease resistant varieties. The "Ruiru 11" was the first variety to be considered a success by the "Kenyan Coffee Board". Unfortunately, it has not been well received by importers and the specialty coffee industry in general.
By the end of 2010, a new variety called "Batian" rust resistant, and which some say has a better cup than "Ruiru 11", was introduced. We will still have to wait a few more years to know its full potential in the cup and productivity.