• VARIETY: SL28, SL34

Producer: Barichu Farmers Cooperative Society
Region: Mathira East Sub-Country, Nyeri
Elevation: 1700-1800 masl
Variety: SL28, SL34
Process: Washed

One of the central tenants of the Manufactory sourcing strategy is an emphasis on partnerships - building long-term relationships with measurable impacts to the quality of life and quality of coffee alike. However, in some cases - like the case of our new 03 - we can trust the established systems and partnerships in place that already contribute to creating some of the most remarkable and distinct coffees on earth.

Our new 03 comes from Nyeri County, on the southern slopes of Mt. Kenya. Here, it is common for farmers to join efforts, forming Cooperatives that not only pool resources, farming strategies and share wet mills. Farmers also benefit from unified representation and economic growth under the Cooperative Development and Coffee Board of Kenya. Kenya is famous for its cooperative systems. These systems support production, processing, milling, marketing and execute a unique auction system. With a chaotic Kenyan election year, waning crop quality, and sky-rocketing coffee prices all around, Kenyan coffee producers were more dependent on each other this year than ever.

This coffee is a result of one of these cooperatives. The Barichu Farmers Cooperative Society, which was founded in 1996 and currently represents are over 5,800 total registered members combining to produce between 3-5 million kilos of coffee annually between 4 Factories, (“Factory” is what Kenyan’s call their Wet Mills.) In addition to milling services, Barichu provides credit to farmers for school fees, facilities, agricultural education and access a local nursery that provides maturing seedlings to help facilitate continuous local growth and income for its members.

The 1,450 members that process their coffee at the Karatina Factory bring ripe red cherries to be visually evaluated and purchased on arrival. Once purchased, the seeds are de-pulped and go through multiple cycles of dry fermentation and rinsing — utilizing fresh waters from the Ragati river — before being sun dried on raised beds. Since most of the contributing members are operating very small coffee gardens less than 1 Ha in size, all these lots are mixed together and separated based on size and quality.

An additional contributor to distinct Kenyan quality is the varietals used. Unlike almost any other region, Kenya utilizes custom-made varieties engineered from Bourbon by Scott Labs. These varieties, called “SL28” and “SL34,” are named after Scott Labs and maximize the potential of the unique terroir of Kenya.

With all this in mind, we call this coffee “Karatina PB,” which refers to the name of the factory it was processed, “Karatina,” and the specific size separation, “PB,” - which is short-hand for “Peaberry,” a somewhat common genetic mutation where one cherry yields one seed instead of two. Peaberries are generally smaller, round and can sometimes present a unique flavor when compared to non-peaberry separations from the same lot.

We love this coffee and are more than happy to represent the wonderful, complex and collaborative nature of the Kenyan coffee industry.

Net Weight 340g / 12oz

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