Kiyonza Natural Akawa Project
Elevation Ave: 1500
Farm Name: Kiyonza
Akawa Project's newest addition started operating in 2020. It's the first station located outside the Mumirwa Province in which Akawa has historically been operating. It's presence brings our project to the border of Rwanda in the North East of Burundi! Located on a hill overlooking the shores of Lake Rwihinda this station was built from the ground up by local implementing partner Succam in order to provide access to the market for local coffee farmers who, until this arrival, were relying on mobile buying from stations located far away. This meant they had no permanent presence to whom not only they could sell their cherries but also to have a contact point throughout the year and be able to build a trusting relationship with. Mobile units would often take advantage of this by underpaying farmers and requiring very low quality standards in order to fill their trucks. This was detrimental to both the communities in Kiyonza and the quality of their coffee. The launch of a modern washing station in Kiyonza means the farmers will now be able to deliver ripe cherries at a natural pace and will be offered agricultural advice from the project staff.
The environment in which the farmers live and grow their crops is simply one straight out of a Nat Geo documentary. With Lake Rwihinda at their feet they have an abundant supply of fish for feeding and papyrus to weave baskets and floor mats. A small island on the Lake, named Akagwa Island (a match made in heaven for our Akawa project's name), allows migrating birds from Europe to shelter and regain strength between December and April when they set on their journey back to warmer skies. The station has produced 50 bags in it's trial year which turned out to show bright acidity, creamy body and sweetness in the cup! In the current very challenging season Burundi farmers have faced (with a crop less than 35% what it was last year) the station has produced 150 bags by sourcing from 453 participating farmers.
The Kiyonza mill is one of 13 mills that form the Akawa project. A joint venture between Succam and Supremo, the Akawa project was created to help producers escape the cycle of poverty in a sustainable and equitable way. Producers, striving for fairer remunerations and better living conditions, demanded a path towards prosperity. As such the project's working directives are based around UTZ certification standards, focusing on good agricultural practices, environmental responsibility and social equity as the central tenets of success for project members.
Latitude, Longitude: -2.52872, 30.07388
Altitude: 1500 m
Participating Farmers: 453
Year Created: 2020
Coffee Variety: Arabica – Red Bourbon
Soil Type: Humus-Volcanic Soil
Average Rainfall: 1350 mm
Average Temperature: 18-22 °C
Processing capacity: 250 MT of green coffee
Drying Beds: 84
Seedlings in nursery: None yet, 2022 TBC
Washing station Manager: NDAYIKEZA Paterne
Agronomist: NTIRANDEKURA Isaie