Country: Kenya Region: Mathira West, Nyeri Producer: Gikanda Farmer Co-operative Farm/Washing Station: Gichathaini Washing Station Variety: SL28, SL34 & Ruiru 11 Process: Washed Altitude: 1600-1900 masl Taste: Sweet, black cherry, tart apple
The Gichathaini factory in the Mathira West district of Nyeri is one of three washing stations owned by the Gikanda Farmers Co-operative. The Gikanda Farmers Co-op has around 3000 members, 770 of whom use the Gichathaini mill and make elective decisions regarding the management and representation of the factory. Coffee in Kenya is typically traceable down to the factory or mill level. Most farmers own small areas of land and often grow other crops such as maize, beans, yams and bananas. For this reason, farmers are organised into Cooperative societies which act as umbrella organisations.
The coffee is picked and delivered to the factory, sorted and de-pulped on the delivery day. It is fermented overnight using clean Ragati river water and then dried on beds. The water used in the washing process is recirculated and moved away from freshwater sources, preventing contamination.