Natural coffees from Burundi are becoming less rare, and this is another reason why that should make you happy. Expect a wild and intriguing cup of coffee, this high grown naturally processed crop has a depth and complexity that we are thrilled to present as a part of our coffee program.
The Kibingo washing station is 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 organized in groups of 30 people, headed by a farm leader. This leader acts as a spokesman to facilitate communication and organization 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 fertilizer from composted coffee pulp.
To promote farm renovation, producers can get low-cost, subsidized coffee seedlings at the washing station. Each station has its own nursery for this purpose. Kibingo washing station participates in a number of farmer outreach and support projects include a goat and pig project, farmer hub, strengthening cooperatives and distributing fertilizer and coffee trees.
Most coffee trees in Burundi are Red Bourbon 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.