Kenya Ndia-Ini Nyeri Natural FILTER
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Region: Mukurweini, Nyeri
Altitude: 1800 - 1900 meters above sea level
Washing Station: Ndia-Ini Cooperative
Growers: 369 farmers delivering to Ndia-Ini station
Variety: Batian, Ruiru 11, SL28 and SL34
Tasting Notes: TBC
Natural processed coffees are less common in Kenya, but this delicious, fruity Natural from Ndia-Ini Cooperative highlights all the best parts of Natural coffees combined with Nyeri’s superb microclimates.
Named for the village near where Ndia-Ini Cooperative was formed, the name means the deepest part of a river. The station is owned by cooperative members who deliver their cherry there. The station was built in 1969.
The cooperative has 1,200 registered farmers, of whom about 395 farmers consistently deliver cherry to the station.
Farmers delivering to Ndai-Ini cultivate primarily SL28 and SL34 in small coffee gardens that are, on average, about 200 trees. ‘SL’ varieties are cultivars originally released by Scott Agricultural Laboratories (SAL) in the 1930s and 1940s. They soon became the go-to trees for many growers in Kenya due to their deep root structure, which allows them to maximize scarce water resources and flourish even without irrigation. They are cultivated with a serious eye towards sustainability and Good Agricultural Practices, with minimal environmental impact where possible.
Batian is a relatively new variety introduced by the Kenya Coffee Research Institute (CRI) in 2010. Batian is named after the highest peak on Mt. Kenya and is resistant to both CBD and CLR. The variety has the added benefit of early maturity – cropping after only two years. Similar to Batian, Ruiru 11 is a new variety known for its disease resistance and high yields. It also starts yielding fruit after just 2 years.
Farmers selectively handpick ripe, red cherry and deliver it to Ndai-Ini Cooperative’s station. At intake, the Cherry Clerk oversees meticulous visual sorting and floating, accepting only dense, ripe cherry. Cherry is laid on raised beds to dry. Drying cherry is raked frequently to ensure even drying. It takes approximately 10 to 14 days for cherry to dry.
Though coffee growing had a relatively late start in Kenya, the industry has gained and maintained a impressive reputation. Since the start of production, Kenyan coffee has been recognized for its high-quality, meticulous preparation and exquisite flavors. Our in-country sister company, Sucafina Kenya, works with farmers across the country to ensure these exceptional coffees gain the accolades they deserve.
Today, more than 600,000 smallholders farming fewer than 5 acres compose 99% of the coffee farming population of Kenya. Their farms cover more than 75% of total coffee growing land and produce nearly 70% of the country’s coffee. These farmers are organized into hundreds of Farmer Cooperative Societies (FCS), all of which operate at least one factory. The remainder of annual production is grown and processed by small, medium and large land estates. Most of the larger estates have their own washing stations.
Most Kenyan coffees are fully washed and dried on raised beds. The country still upholds its reputation for high quality and attention to detail at its many washing stations. The best factories employ stringent sorting practices at cherry intake, and many of them have had the same management staff in place for years.