Rwanda: Kabyiniro - Washed Bourbon
In the cup: Soft, elegant mouthfeel with juicy acidity and balanced berry driven sweetness. Notes of blackberry and lemon against a black tea background.
Cupping Score: 87
Mouthfeel: Soft, silken.
Variety: Red bourbon
Process: Fully washed
Producer: Kabyiniro Washing Station
Altitude: 1600 -1950 meters above sea level
Kabyiniro is blessed with a tropical climate, abundant rainfall and high altitudes of 1,700 – 1,950m above sea level. It is another of Rwanda’s best coffee growing regions. Kabyiniro coffee washing station (CWS) is in Ngororero district in western Rwanda. It sits high up in the mountains at 1,600 – 1,950m above sea level. Regular seasonal rainfall combines with an annual average temperature of 16°C – 21°C.
In the past, farmers here mostly engaged in subsistence agriculture. They grew crops such as cassava, maize, bananas, beans, potatoes, fruits and vegetables to eat, and occasionally sell. Very few farmers were growing coffee.
Now farmers know that coffee is a well-paid cash crop, and that with care, specialty coffee can thrive here.
In 2003, local farmers in Kabyiniro joined together to create a cooperative (six men and 22 women). They requested land from the district authorities to develop coffee farming. It was approved and they were given 30 hectares of land. Each farmer is now responsible for an individually allocated plot.
In 2004, they legally registered Kopiguka Cooperative with the aim of sharing the work and improving their farming systems, processing and marketing. But there was no washing station in area where they could sell their harvested coffee cherries.
So, they started to mobilize other coffee farmers to join the cooperative. Their number increased to 44 members and their coffee trees from 26,000 to 40,000 trees in 2020.