Uganda Rwenzori Kisinga
THE RWENZORIS ARE FAMOUSLY KNOWN AS THE ‘MOUNTAINS OF THE MOON’. THEY STRETCH FOR 120KM ALONG THE WESTERN UGANDA BORDER WITH THE DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO.
Mama Phesto – Farmer at the demonstration farm (Pictured)
‘My name is Mama Phesto, I work at this demonstration farm and I have 6 children. I am growing coffee for a long time. I am curious to see what is going to happen with this coffee. We have been pruning and stamping the coffee trees. The threes look good, and to be honest, I am surprised they look good.’
‘The biggest improvement I have seen is the use of trances, the rain water is managed better now we have these. I also learned that stamping is good and we did it, but I still have to see the result.’
‘I learned that my productivity improves when I maintain the garden very well.’
‘Whenever my friends come to my house, they always are impressed by what they see in the garden. I have also told them what I have learned. Now others are willing to join the group and receive trainings.’
‘I am impressed the most by the rejuvenated coffee trees, after stamping. I hope for better productivity that helps me with my school fees.’
‘My children were not convinced about this demonstration farm and said No to the initiative at first, but I continued. It had to do with trust and security of land. We did not know if we could trust this big company, maybe they wanted to steal the land? You see, nobody has ever done stamping in this area and then all of a sudden this experts come and tell you to change. But we are now happy with the situation.’
Uganda lies in the heart of East Africa on the shores of Lake Victoria, straddles the equator and is the source of the Nile. Sir Winston Churchill first described Uganda as the ‘Pearl of Africa’, while admiring its “magnificent variety of form and colour, profusion of brilliant life and its vast scale”. Benefiting from a bi-modal rainfall season and high altitudes, the country has a pleasant climate all year round and is lush with greenery. The mountain ranges to the east and west are home to Uganda’s Arabica farmers; Robusta is produced on the central plateau. The government of Uganda is promoting coffee production as a key driver for rural development.
Processing and Quality Control
The farmers harvest their coffee by hand,ncarefully selecting the ripe cherries. The cherries are then pre-sorted before being floated in a tank of water. The cherries which float are removed, leaving only the best cherries. These cherries are then sundried on raised tables inside purpose built poly-tunnels. Farmers carefully turn the cherries throughout the day ensuring uniform drying. Once dried to the required moisture content, the coffee is stored and processed the wet mill in Kisinga Town. After processing, the coffee beans then undergo a final removing any black beans or defects from the coffee. The coffee is then bagged and transported to a new dry mill in Namanve on the outskirts of Kampala. Here it is prepared for export through Mombasa. Many farmers choose to sell the fresh cherries after they have been sorted and floated, often with the assistance of the field team based out of Kisinga. This enables farmers to access quick payment for coffee and takes away the risk of processing coffee at their farm, many of whom are not well equipped to dry coffee. The cherries are delivered to the Wet mill in Kisinga Town where a team of trained workers are able to carry out the whole process to a high standard.
THE BUKONZO TRIBE, ARE PROUD AND STRONG PEOPLE THAT HAVE FARMED THE FOOTHILLS OF THE RWENZORI FOR OVER 15 GENERATIONS
We aim to build long term relationships with groups and work closely with them to develop the value chain from farmer through to roaster. The work in the Bukonzo County has only recently begun, but already we are assisting farmers with better market information, improved prices for better quality and advice on how farmers can improve their primary processing techniques. This area will soon become part of the Coffee Services program which aims to sustainably increase coffee production and quality. Small changes making a huge impact.
- Region | Rwenzori, Western Uganda
- Altitude | 1200 – 2200 M.A.S.L
- Processing | Hand picked , Floated , Sun dried
- Harvest Date | August – December
- Lead Farmer | Kananga Neckson