Rwanda – Gitega 108
The Gitega Hill’s washing station is located in the Nyamagabe District of Rwanda’s southern province, very close to Nyungwe Forest – the traced source of the River Nile. It’s owner Bernard Uwitije, is a native of the area and had been trading non washed ordinary coffee until recently when he realised the potential of washing and producing speciality coffee.
When establishing Gitega wet mill he equipped the station with a 1500kg Penagos machine, fermentation tanks, and raised drying beds. These investments, along with strong oversight, has yielded very high quality parchment coffee, even in his first full year in operation.
The average farm supplying to Gitega is at an altitude around 1650m, and that high altitude along with the volcanic soil of the area make Gitega an excellent location for high quality processing. One strategic area of collection is called Miko, which is made up of approximately 165 coffee farming families. The Miko farms sit between 1700 and 1900m and have consistently scored well in cupping.
Gitega Hills processed a little over 150 tons of cherry during its first year, but the capacity of the station has it positioned for growth in the coming seasons. Cherries delivered to the Gitega Hills station are floated and separated to remove any defective cherries. The coffee is then placed on raised African beds at about 2cm of thickness where it is dried for up to 30 days with regular turning each hour and covering during at night time. From here the coffee is then left to rest before being transported to the our partner’s warehouse in Kigali where it is milled and prepared for shipment.