Bukonzo county is divided into many sub-counties including Bugoye, Kisinga, Kyondo, Kyarumba, Munkunyu, Mahango, Nyakatonzi and Isango. The area has many small towns situated on the lowlands, which are joined by road networks. These towns provide ideal locations for coffee processing and are home to many farmer groups, primary processors and it is in one of these towns, Bugoye, where Kyagalanyi, our exporting partners in Uganda, have located its second washing station. At this station, Kyagalanyi is focusing on high quality specialty natural Arabica.
Most farmers have around 1 hectare of land, and all work on the farm is conducted by hand, usually by immediate family members. Families work together in groups, usually community-based but sometimes also extended family groups, to process and market their coffee, an approach known as ‘share farming.’ This helps improve processing, better control quality and increases their marketing ability.
For many, Uganda might not the first country that comes to mind when thinking of high-quality Arabica: the country has been traditionally known as a producer of Robusta – in fact, some of the highest quality Robusta available on the market – and is reputed to even be its birthplace. However, in many regions of the country the challenges to quality Arabica production are certainly more a matter of infrastructure, history and knowledge than environment. For instance, the slopes of Mt. Elgon in the eastern reaches of the country (bordering Kenya) and on the slopes of the Mount Rwenzori, known locally as the ‘mountains of the moon’, in the Northwest bordering the Democratic Republic of Congo, there are microclimates and terrains that are ideal for the production of high-quality coffee.