Nyeri Mahiga - Kenya
Plum, Tamarind, Buttery
Limited Time Offering Kenya is a country that knows how to coffee. Sure, the lofty altitudes and loamy soil have some magic in them. But it’s the farmer-owned production system that really sets Kenya apart. Because farmers have long held ownership over their harvests and distribution, producer know-how and lot quality are unrivaled.
Quality certainly shines through in this double-washed and double-fermented coffee from Nyeri district, produced by 400 smallholder farmers organized around the Othaya Cooperative Society’s Mahiga Factory. Notes of dark stone fruit dominate, with hints of spiced tamarind and a buttery mouthfeel.
Producer Smallholder farmers
Region Mumwe, Nyeri
Elevation 1700-1890 masl
Variety SL28, SL34, Ruiru 11, Batian
This coffee hails from the Othaya Farmers Cooperative Society, which represents more than 14,000 farmer members across the southern Nyeri region, including those that deliver to the Mahiga Factory.
The Mahiga Factory has 400 smallholder farmers actively harvesting and delivering to their processing center. Mahiga Factory’s chairman is Newton Mugai, one of the founding directors of Kenya Cooperative Coffee Exporters (KCCE). KCCE was formed in 2009, with the express goal of managing operations cooperatively and increasing financial returns to farms.
Farmers belonging to Mahiga deliver fresh cherry to the factory. The coffee is double washed and fermented in fresh, cold river water. (Double fermentation is rare in Kenya; the technique typically correlates with excellent cleanliness and cup clarity.) After fermentation is complete, the clean parchment soaks for 16 hours, again in fresh water, before it is sorted by density and brought to the tables to dry, which typically takes two weeks. After drying is complete the coffee is stored on site and eventually delivered to the Othaya dry mill for grading and a final density sort.