In Rwanda coffee is intercropped with native and fruiting trees and other annual crops due to land scarcity. This enables farmers to achieve a better combination of food and cash crops, it also helps maintain biodiversity and healthy soils while controlling erosion on the steep cultivated slopes.
This coffee comes from the Nyamasheke District, set in between Lake Kivu (Rwanda's largest lake and the sixth largest in Africa) and the Nyungwe National Forest, one of the oldest rainforests in Africa, also known for its rich biodiversity. The unique flavors produced in coffees of this region are attributed to the high elevation combined with the cool, humid air of this particular area.
Afrodis Gahonzire with four other coffee growers (Azitha Urwijumukondo, Athanase Fatisuka, Gratien Nkejuwimy, and Froduard Rusingizandekwe) are the farmers behind this exceptional natural red bourbon coffee. Afrodis also manages the Akarega washing station and oversees everything from cherry intake to processing, drying and storage.
The Akagera washing is considered relatively small with only 460 farmers delivering cherries for a total of 380 bags of exportable green coffee each year; this allows the managers to focus exclusively on high quality specialty coffee.