Kinini Washing station has grown over the last few years and so have our offerings from it. This is one of the newer lots from the separation of around 633 farmers that fall within the catchment zone of Kinini.
Coffee is picked and brought to the Kinini washing station where it is kept separate from the other lots brought in that day and logged in the office. From there, it is taken to raised shaded beds for extra cleaning by hand before being taken to the initial floating tank and de-pulped using a four-disc McKinnon pulper. Cherries are then placed in to a cleaning tank for a first wash before the water is changed and a dry fermentation for 24 hours occurs. The tanks are then filled and coffee fermented from between 5 to 20 hours, depending on the decision of the quality manager monitoring the fermentation. One further washing and the coffee is sent to the soaking tanks for a further 24 hours before being transported downstream to the raised beds for controlled drying and a further picking to remove any damaged beans. The coffee is then sun dried for an average of 15 days, depending on the intensity of the sun.
In Rulindo, the highest altitudes have gradually found their picking season extending; in part due to the quality programme Kinini have introduced, providing fertilizer where needed, but more importantly creating a network and introductions to existing cooperatives, as well as using an innovative satellite tracking system that measures the leaf reflection to forewarn of any damage or pest infestation starting. This enables them to get to the area and deal with the problems before it has an impact on the cup. Harvest times now extend from as early as April until as late as December.
Thirty eight of the 252 hectares were planted with Bourbon Mayaguez 139 seedlings when the washing station was established, around 2,000-2,500 in each hectare. The cultivar itself most likely originated from the island of Reunion (The same place as where the original Bourbon mutation was first noted), together
with Jackson that is also widely found in Rwanda, and a Bourbon mutation. The third commonly found cultivar, Bourbon Mayaguez 71, could have come from Ethiopia, introduced via the Congo. These varietals are common in Rwanda in part due to only approved varietals being able to be grown, ensuring suitability
of the varietals for the conditions, but restricting genetic diversity from the nurseries.