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The Kyambura Women’s Coffee Cooperative has just wrapped up their third processing season. Despite the challenges faced from an unusually long dry season, the women were able to harvest over 400 kilos of organic Robusta and Arabica Coffees!
Created by the Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust (VSPT) in December 2010, the Kyambura Women’s Coffee Cooperative aims to bring quality coffee processing back to the Kyambura Gorge region and provide a source of revenue for local families. The project gives local women, particularly those who do not have land of their own, an opportunity to join the cooperative and take care and ownership of the 1000+ coffee trees located on VSPT land.
Working as a group, the women are responsible for the year-round maintenance and care of the trees. The coffee is 100% organic and no chemicals are used on the plants or nearby soils. Twice annually the trees ripen and the group harvests the coffee and bring it to the processing station at the VSPT Community and Conservations Centre where they are able to pulp, wash, dry, roast and grind the coffee.
Tours of the processing station are available and guests are welcome to come by and see the women at work and even participate in some of the processing stages! Come down and hand-roast your own coffee!!
Coffee processing tour includes:
1. Peeling/Pulping Station
- coffee cherries are sorted for quality
- cherries are peeled to produce parchment bean
2. Washing Station
- fermentation begins
- parchment coffee is sorted and washed
3. Drying Station
- stored 2 days in shade
- up to two weeks in sunshine
4. Hulling Station
- mortar and pestle used to remove parchment
- winnowing plates are used to toss parchment and produce “clean coffee”
5. Roasting Station
- hand roasted over a wood burning stove
- roasted coffee is ground using a mortar and pestle
6. Café COMING SOON
- serves a variety of coffees
Nicole, Uganda - Volcanoes Safaris Partnerhip Trust
Tracking chimpanzees in their natural habitat, as they swing from the branches in the canopy high above the forest floor is nothing short of exhilarating. The chimps effortlessly cross and scamper through the trees above the gorge, and visitors on the other hand must cross the river using natural bridges in order to keep up with the chimps. So although the walk usually lasts only 2–3 hours, descending the steep gorge and crossing the log bridges over the river requires some agility and fitness.
Chimpanzee tracking is also available in nearby Kalinzu, a forest reserve 30 minutes drive from Kyambura Gorge Lodge where there is a community of about 40 habituated chimpanzees.