Simbi coffee washing station started in 2013 with the construction of a 300 MT per season cherry processing facility, and a 2.8 MT/hour pulping machine. Simbi uses the wet fermentation method, and density sorting using grading channels and water.

They then transport the wet parchment for 24 hours of covered drying before moving the parchment to uncovered drying beds for an average of 15 days. In Simbi’s first year of operation it placed 9th in the Rwanda Cup of Excellence competition, and has since focused on maintaining the quality while increasing the production.

Simbi coffee washing station is a new coffee washing station started to operate in 2013.It is located in south province in Huye Distict and is a private owned by Mr. Abdul Rudahunga who is a coffee grower and an entrepreneur.

The idea come after that as a coffee grower by family and due to the known quality of the coffee in Huye-maraba zone, and in addition to the new government coffee extension program in that zone resulting in a lot of coffee that will need to be processed without being taken far from the farms.

The supplied cherries are mainly from Simbi, maraba, sovu and Kigoma sectors with farmers grouped into cooperatives imbereheza composed of 250 members (60% women) currently growing coffee trees on around 45 Ha.

Simbi coffee washing station started in 2013 with the construction of a 300 MT per season cherry processing facility, and a 2.8 MT/hour pulping machine. Simbi uses the wet fermentation method, and density sorting using grading channels and water. They then transport the wet parchment for 24 hours of covered drying before moving the parchment to uncovered drying beds for an average of 15 days. In Simbi’s first year of operation it placed 9th in the Rwanda Cup of Excellence competition, and has since focused on maintaining the quality while increasing the production. Simbi is a privately owned washing station operated by Abdul Rudahunga, who was inspired to get into the coffee business by his grandmother, who was a coffee farmer and one of the few rural Rwandans that roasted and drank coffee regularly.

At present the most popular method for processing specialty coffee is the ‘washed‘ method. Its outcome should always be clean coffee, with all defects removed and fully reflecting its terroir in taste. This method is also quite safe if some basic rules are adhered to, especially during cherry fermentation. Its major drawbacks are requirements for technical equipment and large fresh water supply.

The processing mill is divided into several parts, built in order for the coffee to move in water by gravity. In the upper part there is a receiving station, where farmers bring freshly harvested coffee cherries late in the evening. After weighing the cherries, these are transferred into a huge “siphon” filled with water. This is where the first sorting of faulted cherries takes place.

This is followed by a thorough massage in a huller, which separates hard unripe cherries from the ripe ones. The ripe cherries, whose skin has been removed, continue in the water trough to fermentation tanks. Fermentation process follows, lasting 12-72 hours, depending on the variety, of altitude and the temperature. For the final quality of the beans it is absolutely essential to judge correctly the right time for terminating the cycle and to assure perfect cleanliness of the tank. In ideal climatic conditions, coffee is dried in concrete patios.

This saves energy and resources which would be otherwise consumed by coffee drying machines. Great care is taken to ensure the moist ‘seeds’ do not get ‘baked’ in the sun: the nights are cold and the ‘dew’ at sunrise and after sunset should be avoided. Usually, coffee is partly dried in the sun, and the drying process is then completed mechanically to obtain the required 11-12 % moisture of the beans. Driers are heated by wood stoves, in which the removed parchment and wood from pruning etc can be burnt as well.