Ugandan-Sipi Falls growing district, organic
This unique and delicious coffee comes to us by way of smallholder producers growing coffee on the northern slopes of Mount Elgon, a massive peak split nearly in two by the border of Uganda and Kenya. The microregion is rife with coffee and is well-served by the Sipi Falls mill, a centralized washing station with the capacity for processing cherry and drying coffee to improve the value to local farmers.
Coffee producers in the region had been home processing their coffee (and still do), thinking it was a way to add value to their crops. Kawacom, the export industry that owns the Sipi Falls washing station, has gone to great lengths to sit down with producers and show them the time savings and added value (and quality) by contributing their unprocessed cherry to a central mill where washing, fermenting, and drying can be performed consistently with professional oversight. They have also started an example nursery with high quality varieties and provide agronomic support to the local smallholders, many of whom are families led by women.
In this special microlot (among the first Sipi Falls has ventured to produce) the coffee has undergone “Honey” processing, a hybrid processing method that strips the skin and fruit away but leaves the sticky mucilage surrounding the coffee in tact. Before this, however, the coffee cherries must be floated to sort for density and damaged seeds. After pulping, unlike with washed coffees, the mucilage-covered parchment is sent straight to the drying tables, skipping the fermentation tank and channel grading steps. After a full three weeks drying under retractable canopies and undergoing frequent turning to promote even, slow drying and hand-picking to remove visible defects, the coffee is ready to export. cupping notes: Honey, Plum, pear, nut. Sold in 14oz tin.