Musasa washing station provides up to six training sessions annually for farmers in the region. This training, combined with selective handpicking, spot on microclimates and meticulous processing creates a coffee that is bursting with citrus and floral notes.
The washing station lies at 1,526 metres above sea level in the hills of Congo Nile Trail. It began operations in 2013 and has made leaps and bounds in quality, winning a Cup of Excellence. 1,750 growers deliver to the station, 23% of which are under the age of 35. These young growers are the future of Rwandan coffee, so these farmers are given all the training possible to ensure optimal growth for their small farms.
After farmers have hand-harvested their cherry, they transport them to the washing station to be inspected and hand-sorted. Farmers then receive a payment in line with the quality and quantity delivered. Musasa uses a Pinhalense eco-pulper, which only uses one cubic metre of water to process up to 20 tonnes, massively reducing the washing stations environmental footprint.
What is Honey Processing?
This particular coffee is honey processed – this process is a hybrid of natural and washed, mixing elements from both to create new differentiations in flavour. The fresh coffee is de-pulped, but left to dry without washing. This retains some of the fruit, but not as much as with natural processing, leaving a sticky golden coating.
This process uses less water, in turn making the coffee more environmentally friendly. Honey processed coffees also tend to be more complex in flavour than washed coffees, but not quite as fruity as naturals.