Kenya Nyeri Othaya Gura
Our Kenya Nyeri Othaya Gura 14TY0004* comes to us from family owned farms located on the southeastern slopes of Mount Kenya in the Aberdares Mountain Range in Nyeri County, Kenya, near the Gura River. The Gura factory (wet mill) has 500 active members that harvest and deliver there. This is one of 19 wet mills managed by the umbrella organization Othaya Farmers Co-operative Society. Gura factory deals with about 2,000 bags of coffee in a harvest season, with most members farming about 4 bags of exportable green coffee.
Coffee production in Kenya is dominated by a cooperative system. Started in the 1950’s with 250 members, the Othaya FCS is one of Kenya’s oldest and largest specialty coffee co-ops with about 14,000 members across the southern Nyeri region. The co-op promotes unity and progressiveness as well as offering various types of assistance to its members. They keep a large seedling nursery with both traditional and hybrid varieties and a farm store so they may supply members as needed. Members are very involved in the cooperative themselves and are able to vote on representation, marketing and milling contracts for their coffee as well as profit allocation.
While Othaya FCS is an umbrella organization over dry multiple mills, it is also one of the key members of the bigger umbrella organization Kenya Cooperative Coffee Exporters (KCCE) that has a total of 4,000 individual cooperative members. Formed in 2009, the goal of KCCE is to manage marketing and exporting operations internally and cooperatively instead of contractually with third parties. By dealing internally KCCE can return more profit to farmers and they don’t have to wait months after harvest for that return either.
Co-op members generally farm on small plots of land intercropped with trees that provide other food/income sources. This crop was grown at 1,700 to 1,890 meters above sea level in a mineral-rich volcanic loam. After harvest these beans were processed by fermenting the depulped beans underwater for about 15 hours, removing the remaining mucilage and soaking the parchment coffee for another 16 hours and then graded put to dry on raised beds for 2-3 weeks depending on climate. After this the beans are sent to the dry mill. Othaya FCS has one central dry mill where all coffee crops from their members are sent for final dry milling, screen grading and sorting, as well as cupping and scoring before export. This type of processing and milling is a longstanding tradition in Kenya but also helps the co-op and farmers to assure consistent and quality coffees are being exported.
Bright aroma with nuances of citrus, honeysuckle, and herbs. Heavy yet smooth body with notes of grapefruit, blood orange, and lemon along with caramel, wafers, and a touch of florals.
*”14TY0004 is an outturn number, these are unique microlot codes given to each and every batch of parchment coffee delivered to dry mills from individual factories or estates anywhere in Kenya and are the units on which Kenya’s entire microlot export system is built. This shorthand code gives the specific batch of coffee a time and place sequentially with all batches of coffee to indicate when it was harvested, what mill it went to and when the delivery was made”