Birambo Village, Kalehe Territory, South-Kivu Province
90 smallholder members of SOPACDI delivering to the Birambo MicroStation
Blue Mountain, Bourbon, Caturra, Catuai, Kabare 2
SOPACDI (Solidarité Paysanne pour la Promotion des Actions Café et Development Intégral) is an organization comprising more than 5,600 farmers, roughly 20 percent of whom are women, located near Lake Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Each farmer has a very small area of farmland for coffee (fewer than 2 hectares on average), and tenders cherries to SOPACDI through the organization’s 10 collection subgroups.
These coffees are traceable to the individual washing stations, where members will deliver their coffee in cherry form and receive payment for what they bring, based on volume. After that point the coffee is sorted and will be separated into lots depending on the day and the quality, which makes it impossible to know which farmers’ coffees are in which lots.
About the Birambo MicroStation
At this washing station, coffee is depulped the day it is delivered, and fermented dry for 12 hours. Then it spends 12 under water before being passed through the washing canal, and then it is soaked for an additional 12 hours. The coffee is dried on raised beds under a cover of shade for 14–20 days. This particular “microstation” serves 90 producers, including 21 women. The group represents about 30 total hectares of coffee farmland, which is about 1/3 hectare per producer on average.