Rwandan Buf Ubumwe
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Black tea | Blackberry | Raspberry Varietal: 100% Red Bourbon Processing: Fully washed & sun dried on raised beds Altitude: 1,550 to 1,700 metres above sea level This 100% Red Bourbon variety coffee was processed at Buf Coffee’s Ubumwe washing station, which is located at around 1,600 metres above sea level near the Rwandan capital, Kigali. Buf Café has an incredible story. The title ‘Buf’ derives from ‘Bufundu’, the former name of the region in which its washing stations are located. It was founded in 2003 by Epiphanie Mukashyaka, a source of inspiration to female entrepreneurs in Rwanda’s coffee sector and beyond. Epiphanie was widowed during the 1994 genocide but chose not to leave her family’s small coffee farm. Instead she set about rebuilding and developing her business and with it the local community. She established the Remera washing station (her first) with a loan from the Rwandan Development Bank and the assistance of the USAID-financed PEARL project. This programme aimed at switching the focus in the Rwandan coffee sector from an historic emphasis on quantity to one of quality - and so opening up Rwanda to the far higher-earning specialty coffee market. Buf Café now owns four coffee washing stations – Remera, Nyarusiza, Umurage and Ubumwe. The company, which was serving fewer than 500 farmers in 2003, is now procuring coffee cherries from almost 7,500 smallholder farmers in the Southern province of Rwanda. Buf has very strong links with the local communities that supply it, providing jobs for hundreds. At the end of each season Buf shares any surplus profits with both the cooperatives with which it works and its washing station managers. This coffee was processed at Ubumwe, located in the Kamonyi District. The Ubumwe area has rich soil nutrients, which are necessary for coffee growth and which contribute directly to cherry ripeness and root development. This nutritional difference has a huge impact on coffee growing and the quality of the coffee. The majority of small farmers in the area have an average of only 300 coffee trees (less than a quarter of a hectare) and use some of their land to cultivate other crops such as maize and beans to feed themselves and their families. Most of their income from the sale of coffee is used to take their children to school, pay for medical care and for investment in livestock. The level of care that all Buf washing stations take over their processing is impressive. Cherries are hand-picked only when fully ripe and then pulped that same evening using a mechanical pulper that divides the beans into three grades by weight. After pulping, the coffee is fermented overnight (for around 12-18 hours) and then graded again using flotation channels that sort the coffee by weight. These speciality-grade beans have been sensitively roasted to let the natural flavour attributes of the beans shine through. Whatever your brew method, use freshly-roasted and ground beans to experience the distinct flavours and aromatics.
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Grown in the mountains near Kigali in Rwanda, this single origin coffee is bursting with fruity flavours. Enjoy a clear, sweet finish and lovely balanced cup.
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