Unorthodox - Uganda
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Smallholders near the town of Kasese in the Rwenzori Mountains region of Western Uganda
SL14 & SL28
1300 - 1550 masl
Notes of Boozy Peach, Melon and Chocolate Chips
SCA Score - 88.5
The Rwenzori mountain range, otherwise known as the "Mountains of the Moon”, stretches along Uganda’s western border with the Democratic Republic of Congo and is the western-most reach of the Great Rift Valley. The Bakonzo tribe have farmed the area for hundreds of years, and the fertile soils, high altitudes and cool equatorial climate promote slow ripening and give rise to some of the best coffees produced by Africa’s smallholder farmers.
Each farmer in the area manages a roughly two-acre plot and meticulously cares for the coffee plants in their charge. The cherries are all hand-picked when ripe and the beans are processed naturally by allowing to dry with the fruit still intact.
Great Lakes Coffee has been sourcing coffee directly from farmers in the Rwenzori Mountain region for over 5 years. For the last 2 years they have worked with certain farmer groups willing to deliver ripe cherry of a high standard, which is then collected and transported to a drying station in the town of Kasese. These cherries are immediately floated to remove any insect damaged cherries, and then spread out on raised drying beds to be sorted and turned during the 14 – 18 day drying cycle.
Once the coffees have reached a moisture level of 12% in dried cherry form (locally called Kiboko, which in Swahili means 'Hippopotamus', due to the shape and colour of the dried cherry) they are moved to the warehouse to rest for 2 weeks before being transported to the GLC drymill facility in Kampala.