Rugali Anoxic, Rwanda
Notes; Riesling, Elderflower, Black Tea
Process: Anoxic Washed
Variety: Red Bourbon
Importer: Raw Material
Per-Kilogram green price: £12.52
Amount purchased: 30kg
In Rwanda, Raw Material works alongside Muraho Trading Co. This partnership helps affiliate co-operatives increase their quality of production, fetch a higher price for their coffee, and introduce them to new markets. This will be a continuous work in progress in the coming years, as Raw Material gains a greater understanding of the particular challenges Rwandan coffee producers face.
Through this process Raw Material can develop a model that creates incentives which generate producer buy-in, all the while maximising impact. Raw Material supplies coffee from across Muraho’s washing stations, which are located in the Nyamasheke, Gakenke, and Nyabihu regions of Rwanda. Built in April 2016, Rugali coffee washing station sees an annual production of approximately 54,000kg of milled green coffee each year. The drying conditions at Rugali are ideal for ensuring optimal post-pulp drying, where coffee is laid on the drying beds between 12 pm and 3 pm, to ensure maximum exposure to the sun during the warmest time of the day.
Through the combined efforts of the team at El Fénix and Villamaría in Colombia, Raw Material have been testing out various experimental fermentation techniques since 2018. Having the space and time to focus on ways to boost the complexity of coffees through fermentation has brought fantastic results. Miguel, who is based at El Fénix, has been working on a ‘water-pillow’ technique that has now been rolled out not only in Caldas at Villamaría, but as far as Shyira in Rwanda.
The resulting technique focuses on low-temperatures, and a vacuum-pressure created when a barrier is laid across the cherry or beans. Cool water is poured on top of the barrier, removing any chance of oxygen entering the space during fermentation. This absence of oxygen and low temperatures allows for extended fermentation times without a high thermal mass. This is because as heat leaves the fermenting coffee, the water pillow above the mass works as a heat exchanger, and the heat is able to evaporate off the top.