Kiunyu Coffee Factory is located within the Kirinyaga district of the Central province of Kenya. Kiunyu factory serves the members of the Karithathi Farmers Cooperative Society. Established in the 1960s it serves the villages of Kagumoini, Kianduma, Kiambuuku, Kiambatha, Gatura and Kiamuki. The area experiences two seasons of rainfall, the long rains from March to May and the short rains from October to December. Typically the climate ranges from 13 to 25 degrees celsius year round. Production cycle follows the standard timeframe with main crop harvested October through December and fly crop (commonly called first semester harvest, in Kenya) harvested April through June. The main varieties of coffee grown here are SL 34 and Ruiru 11, with SL 34 accounting for 99% of all coffeeproduced from this factory. Most farmers in the area have a preference for growing tea over coffee which may account for the lower production rates. After picking, ripe cherry is brought to the factory by smallholder farmers, before it undergoes processing to remove the skin and pulp –known as the wet processing method. Water is pumped from the Karithathi river to reservoir tanks for pulping and recirculation. The factory is using a disc pulper to remove the skin and fruit from the inner parchment layer that is protecting the green coffee bean.After pulping, the coffee is fermented overnight to break down the sugars, traveling through channels to the soaking tank the coffee is carefully cleaned, soaked and spread out on the raised drying tables. Time on the drying tables depends on climate, ambient temperature and total production volume undergoing processing. Drying can take from 7 to 15 days in total. Frequent turning and sorting will happen during the drying stage.
For more information on Kenyan coffee, visit our Kenya Origin Page.