The hills of the Kayanza province that surround the Nemba Washing Station in Burundi have a special mix of favorable altitude and microclimates, resulting in some of the best coffee in Burundi. For the past few seasons, we've also had the pleasure of sourcing Nemba in both washed and natural processes, allowing you the rare chance to taste the same wonderful coffee, processed two very different ways.
But the uniqueness doesn't end there - this coffee also buys goats.
In the winter of 2017, we committed to guaranteeing farmers better compensation. We set an industry-leading baseline price for all the coffee we purchase – more than 40% above the organic fair trade guarantee. With that commitment in place, there was a little problem with Burundi Nemba that year - it didn't cost enough.
In our sourcing partner Greenco's business model, producers are paid immediately when they bring coffee to the washing station. Unless a delivery is separated into a microlot, that particular coffee's traceability to a given farmer ends there. This arrangement made it difficult to provide any assurance that the farmers who produced the coffee we purchased would see the benefit of our new minimum price guarantee. But Greenco had an idea. Working with the Kahawatu Foundation, they established four village associations made up of 109 farmers from the Nemba area. Over the course of four weeks, these groups met and received training on the legal procedures of associations and the goals of a village-based lending group. At the end of their training, each group received goats to be distributed to farming families, which helped diversify income and provide stability in the off-season.
This is our fifth year buying goats for the farmers of Nemba Washing Station. We're pleased to once again be working with Greenco and Nemba to source a coffee as delicious and unique as the story behind it.
Try Burundi Nemba here