2019 marked the year of big changes for Therence and Gatukuza: It was the first year they produced day lots, as opposed to bulk lots that lacked delivery traceability. It was the first year they cupped through all the coffee they produced. These changes obviously paid off as it also happened to be the first year their fully washed coffee won first place at Burundi’s annual Cup Of Excellence competition!
Gatukuza washing station is named after the hill it’s built on. The word ‘Gatukuza’ comes from Kirundi, the local language spoken in Burundi, but has no distinct meaning or translation. For as long as people can remember, that’s what the hill has been called. Gatukuza washing station is nestled in the Gashikanwa commune, in the northern province of Ngozi. The people who call Gatukuza home grow almost everything they love to eat- bananas, potatoes, beans, maize, sweet potatoes, peas- wrapping the hill in every imaginable green. 600 farmers from 8 neighboring hills deliver the cherries to Gatukuza washing station. Therence and his team also mapped out the regions that are far from the washing station or don’t have access to any nearby washing station. That’s how they picked the 112 spots to create transit centers – cherry collection and quality check points set up on the coffee hills that shorten the distance farmers have to travel to deliver their cherries. More than 10,000 farmers from 9 communes delivered their cherries at these transit centers this season.
Coffee varieties: Bourbon
Processing: Fully Washed
Altitude: 1,658 meters above sea level