Kiangundo, Kenya - Filter Roast
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Kiangundo is a washing station – or factory, as they are called in Kenya – located in Nyeri County in the Karatina Municipality. Established in 1968, it is one of four active washing stations – along with its sisters Gachuiro, Ichuga and Kiamaina – owned by the Kiama Coffee Farmers’ Cooperative Society (FCS). Kiama is made up of over 2,500 producers who farm in Kenya’s central highlands.
Kiangundo receives coffee cherries from 615 of the cooperative’s members (363 male, 252 female) who grow coffee trees on nearby farms, located between 1,700-1,900 meters above sea level. Manager Jackson Mahu Kooro oversees the collection and careful processing of the coffee cherries following his recent promotion to factory manager, after 17 years as as Kiangundo’s machine operator. Besides Jackson, Kiangundo employs five permanent staff members and an additional ten workers during the season. The coffee cherry is processed by a four-disc pulper, before being dried and sorted on the factory’s 51 raised tables.
In 2020, the cooperative upgraded to digital scales, providing farmers and clerks with better accountability when coffee cherry is delivered. The factory is also in the process of completing their Rainforest Alliance certification, as part of Kiama’s commitment to social, economic and environmental sustainability.
Kiangundo sits at 1,800m above sea level and is located near the Ragati river. Fresh, clean water is pumped from Ragati to process coffee, contributing to its exceptional quality. The area surrounding the river is an 8,000-hectare conservancy made up of montane forest and marshes that are home to a myriad of native wildlife, including elephant, buffalo and leopard.