The Tegu washing station which takes its name from Tegu river. Tegu is a Kikuyu name that roughly translates to “low place”. The station processes cherries from about 1200 smallholders who on average have about 0.4 hectares of coffee trees. The washing station has built up a strong reputation for producing excellent coffee and has been able to secure prices above the market standard and give over 85% of that sale price back to farmers. At Tegu they process an astounding 330 tons of cherries per year, primarily SL 28 and SL 34 although increasingly we are seeing more Batian and Ruiri 11, two varieties developed in Kenya for their high yield and good disease resistance and resilience.
AB or AA refer to the screen size of the beans, the screen size for an AA is between 17 and 18, the smallest size in which each of these sizes is 1/64th of an inch. This method of sorting was traditionally done by sifting the green beans through progressively smaller holed metal sheets so as to categorise them based on size. The screen size doesn’t directly correlate to quality as variety, altitude and soil composition all have a big impact on the growth and taste of the end product.
This coffee was pulped, fermented for up to 24 hours before washing and soaking for another 24 hours before being left to dry for up to 20 days depending on the weather and rainfall.