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When the moon shines bright up in the sky, juicy apple & cola rain drops gently flow through the hills. They are here to protect us.
Coffee’s roots in Tanzania can be traced via oral history back to the Haya tribe of Northwest Tanzania, who reportedly brought coffee back from Abyssinia (modern day Ethiopia) in the 16th century.
This “Haya coffee”, or amwani, was a Robusta variety. Early Tanzanians prepared amwani by boiling unripe cherries with herbs and then smoking the mixture for several days. The resulting cherry mixture could be chewed whole.
The role of coffee in Haya culture was more for cultural functions than daily consumption. Amwani was included in formal greetings, tributes to royals and religious rituals. Coffee use was so carefully restricted that, in order to grow coffee, people needed authorization from the royals. This strict control on coffee growing also increased its value and status by restricting supply and making coffee rarer.
Following German and then British colonial rule, the Tanzanian coffee industry has undergone many transformations and adjustments in an effort to create the most equal, profitable and high-quality coffee possible.
Coffee in Tanzania has been grown almost exclusively in the North for a long time. The Kilimanjaro, Arusha, Tarime, Kagera, Kigoma and Karatu/Ngorongoro regions were prized for their ideal Arabica growing conditions.
Similar to Rwanda, Tanzania has only recently become recognized for its specialty coffees. With increasingly better infrastructure, access to washing stations and farmer organization, Tanzania is now consistently producing high-quality specialty-grade coffees.
German settlers first planted coffee on Tembo Tembo estate in the 1920s. Today, the estate is owned and operated by Gaétan and Caroline Bordier, a Swiss couple, with the help of BIRCHBACH’s in-country partner, Sucafina Tanzania, who has invested in improving the coffee and the lives of smallholder farmers through a variety of initiatives.
The view from Tembo Tembo Estate is surreal. From the Northern edges of the farm, you can see the edge of Ngorogoro crater, an ancient collapsed volcano whose fertile valley is now home to dozens of different animal species: from African elephants to lions, rhinoceros and leopards and giraffes. The northern border of the estate lies along the Southwestern side of Mount Oldeani, whose slopes drain water into Lake Eyasi, a key saltwater lake on the borders of Ngorogoro Conservation area and Serengeti National Park.
In this washed coffee from Tembo Tembo Estate, the lush microclimate of Northern Tanzania meets the careful cultivation of Gaétan & Caroline Bordier.
Since they took ownership in 2009, the Bordiers have renovated the farm and planted high-quality varieties with a focus on lot separation.
In addition to implementing modern cultivation techniques to help increase the quality of their coffee, they also planted this Kent, Geisha and Pacamara seedlings; three varieties renown for producing quality coffee and high cup scores.
Gaétan & Caroline believe that the next steps towards quality improvement lie in the small details and are focused on improving post-harvest control, especially moisture content, in order to increase coffee quality.
At Tembo Tembo Estate, cherries are selectively handpicked and delivered to the farm’s onsite wet mill. Cherries are pulped on an Ecopulper and dry fermented. Following fermentation, parchment is washed in clean water and then laid to dry on African raised beds for 8-10 days. Parchment is turned regularly to ensure even drying.
Traditionally, the estate dries parchment directly under the sun. Parchment rests on the farm for 1-2 months in lined, airtight bags stored on wooden pallets.
GAÉTAN & CAROLINE BORDIER
(TEMBO TEMBO ESTATE)
JUICY & BRIGHT
APPLE & COLA
IDEAL TO ENJOY AS FILTER
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