Rwanda has come a long way over the years. Coffee was initially brought in by the Belgian colonials as a cash crop that people could produce. The quality produced wasn’t much to speak of and farmers received little for their work.As time went on the specialty coffee began to find its legs and the women of Rwanda were finding themselves as breadwinners. 20 years later the Rwandan coffee industry has become known for producing specialty coffee whose quality can rival that of Kenya & Ethiopia.
The Kinini cooperative is located in the Rulindo district north of Kigali and the lot is traceable to farms surrounding the village of Tumba. Of the ~650 members approximately 85% are women producers and as such they’re a member of the Rwandan chapter of the International Women’s Coffee Association(IWCA for short). The IWCA is a non-profit organization that works to empower women in the coffee industry so they can achieve meaningful and sustainable lives. So maybe the short version of this would go like: while these producers aren’t new to coffee this is the first time they’ve banded together to sell coffee to the international market as a community. If that wasn’t enough they’re also in the process of gaining their organic certification. The coffee, I think, is a gem and is reflective of the changes that have happened over the years.
All in all this is a great coffee that’s traceable back to a single community(Tumba) and supporting great/positive growth in it. As Jake from Crop to Cup maintains: Good coffee comes from good people.
Name: Rwanda Kinini Tumba
Farmers: 622 farmers surrounding the Tumba Village
Region: Rulindo district
Varietals: Bourbon, Mayaguez, BM 139
Altitude: 5580 – 7200 feet above sea level
Description: effervescent, lemon citrus, plums & chocolate