Karani Factory was constructed 1998. It’s operated by Kabare Cooperative Society and serves the more than 600 smallholder farmers who deliver cherry to the station. The snowcapped peaks of Mt. Kenya are visible from the factory and from many of the surrounding farms, creating a stunning vista.
Smallholder farmers cultivate coffee in the region’s rich volcanic and sandy soil. The area is well irrigated and verdant. Most farms are extremely small, about 20 trees on average and provide cash income for families.
Smallholders handpick ripe cherry and deliver it to the factory that day. At intake, cherry is meticulously sorted. All sorting is overseen by the cherry clerk, who ensures that only ripe, undamaged cherry is received.
Once sorted, cherry is pulped on the factory’s disc pulper and then density sorted. Pulped cherry is dry fermented for 16 to 24 hours. Skilled staff oversee fermentation, checking regularly to ensure fermented is halted at just the right moment. After fermentation, cherry is sent through washing and grading channels.
Parchment is placed on raised drying beds. Staff sort drying parchment to remove any remaining defective beans and turn parchment constantly to promote even drying. Drying typically takes between 1 and 3 weeks.