Farmers cultivate small coffee farms of approximately 250 to 350 trees at altitudes of 1,600 to 1,800+ meters above sea level and deliver their cherry to Kabingara factory. The high altitudes provide the warm days and cool nights that help nurture sweet, dense cherry. The washing station is owned and operated by Karithathi Farmers’ Cooperative Society (FCS).
Farmers delivering to Karithathi washing station cultivate primarily SL28, SL34, Batian and Ruiru 11 in small coffee gardens that are, on average, smaller than 1 hectare.
Smallholders selectively handpick ripe, red cherry and deliver it to Kabingara Factory. At intake, the Cherry Clerk oversees meticulous visual sorting and floating and accepts only dense, ripe cherry.
After intake, cherry is pulped and fermented. Following fermentation, coffee is washed in clean water and laid to dry on raised beds. Workers rake parchment frequently to ensure even drying. They cover drying parchment during the hottest time of day, to maintain slow, even drying and at night, to shelter parchment from moisture. It takes an average of 7 to 14 days for parchment to dry.