Location: Kibingo washing station, Kayanza region Landed: January 2022
Altitude: 1,700 -1,900 masl Varietal: Red Bourbon
Process: Intenso yeast anaerobic washed
Flavour profile: Lavender, vanilla & hoppy
Category: Limited & Experimental
There are 3,515 smallholders living around Kayanza, Burundi who deliver their cherry to Kibingo washing station. Sucafina import this coffee from their in-country partner Greenco. In addition to operating 13 washing stations in Burundi and processing excellent coffee, Greenco is also working with communities to increase farmer livelihoods and general equality in coffee producing areas.
KIBINGO WASHING STATION
Kibingo washing station is located in the commune of Kayanza in northern Burundi. The station itself sits 1,893 meters above sea level. The altitude of the farms in the neighbouring hills that supply the washing station varies from 1,700 to 1,900 meters above sea level.
Kibingo serves 3,515 registered coffee growers, spread over 18 hills in the area. All producers registered at a Greenco washing station are organised in groups of 30 people, headed by a farm leader. This leader acts as a spokesman to facilitate communication and organisation with the washing station.
The washing station is equipped with 10 fermentation tanks, 2 soaking tanks and a drying field with 165 drying tables and 4 pre-drying tables. Kibingo can process 750,000 kg of cherry per day.
At the washing station, farmers can obtain organic fertiliser from composted coffee pulp. To promote farm renovation, producers can get low-cost, subsidised coffee seedlings at the washing station. Each station has its own nursery for this purpose.
The washing station participates in a number of farmer outreach and support projects including a livestock rearing project and a range of Farmer Hub projects centred on strengthening cooperatives and improving yields.
INTENSO YEAST PROCESSING
During the harvest season, all coffee is selectively hand-picked. Most families only have 200 to 250 trees, and harvesting is done almost entirely by the family.
After sorting, cherry is pulped within 6 hours of delivery. During pulping, cherry is separated into high- and low-grade by density on a Mackinon 3-disc pulper outfitted with an additional separation disk. Once pulped, coffee is placed in airtight, Epoxy-coated, concrete fermentation tanks. Intenso yeast purchased from the French company Lalcafe is added to the tanks. The tanks are then covered and left to ferment in this environment for approximately 36 hours.
LALCAFÉ INTENSO™ yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) was specially developed for coffee production over a four-year period of research and trials. Trials in various regions and environments showed that Intenso is well suited to better control the wet process’ efficiency and to upgrade the cup quality. The yeast is able to control the fermentation process against the risk of spoilage micro-organisms that can generate undesirable defects. Furthermore, its specific metabolism and high capacity even at cold temperatures (minimum 15°C inside the coffee tank) allow for the expression of fresh and fruity characteristics of the coffee beans while respecting the unique flavours of each lot.
The longer fermentation time for yeast processed coffees (washed processed typically ferments for about 12 hours) also allows for more developed flavours. The extra time enables the beans to absorb metabolites, which can enhance flavours. Complexity, acidity, brightness, floral notes and more are all boosted by the lengthened fermentation time.
After fermentation is completed, coffee is run through washing and grading canals. In total, the channel separates beans into seven grades according to density. After washing, parchment is poured onto wooden trays or nylon bags and carried to the drying tables, each in its separate quality group. Each tray and nylon bag of parchment keeps its traceability tag with all info.
Parchment is laid on raised beds to dry. While drying, parchment is repeatedly sorted and sifted to ensure even drying. Parchment is left to dry from sunrise to sunset and is covered with a sheet during the evening or when it rains. If the weather conditions are good, the parchment takes on average 10 to 14 days to dry. The moisture level is carefully monitored and any parchment with visual defects is removed.
Once dry, the parchment coffee is then bagged and taken to the warehouse. Greenco’s team of expert cuppers assess every lot (which are separated by station, day and quality) at the lab. The traceability of the station, day and quality is maintained throughout the entire process.
Too learn more about Yeast fermentation see video here.