Tasting Notes: Stewed Black Cherry, Cedar, Meyer Lemon
Gishubi is a stone’s throw away from the indigenous Kibira forest. The cool mist of the forest breathes daily onto the coffee trees. This slightly cooler micro-climate makes the beans of Gishubi grow and mature slower, which sets the Gishubi cup apart.
Sadly, the hill’s proximity to the forest has meant that during times of conflict it becomes a permanent theater of war. Armed groups have often hidden in the forest and forcefully collected people’s possessions, crops and livestock. During times of conflict farmers have no choice but to abandon their fields and children are not able to go to school.
When Long Miles started working with Gishubi farmers, many of them were ready to uproot their coffee trees and abandon their farms. Farming families have experienced loss of an unimaginable kind, which has made it difficult for them to spend money on their coffee trees or buy organic fertilizer for their farms. Coffee scout Alphonse started roaming Gishubi hill daily, sharing his agronomical knowledge on growing quality coffee with farmers.
Becuase of Alphonse’s dedication, farmers are now re-investing in their coffee by looking for land to plant more coffee trees. His vision is for all farmers on Gishubi hill to plant shade trees and for them to bring quality cherries to the washing station. He also wants to work together with farmers to eliminate the number of antestia bugs, the colorful critters thought tobe linked to spreading the potato defect, found in farmers’ coffee trees.
CHALLENGES: It’s a far walk from home for farmers who have to travel along the steep and narrow mountain paths that cut through the valley between Gishubi and Heza.
FUTURE: The Kibira forest provides an abundance of water to this region, but the water pipes laid through the Gishubi community only provide water to the city of Kayanza, 18km away. In the future, the people of Gishubi hill hope the pipes can provide their communities with water as well.