Kenyan Coffee

Kenyan Coffee

Kenya Coffee

Coffee was first introduced into Kenya in 1893 at Bura in Taita. Thereafter, it was grown at Kibwezi under irrigation in 1900, subsequently at Kikuyu near Nairobi in 1904. It was only after the 1930’s, that the Colonial Government allowed controlled planting of coffee outside the European settlement areas specifically in Kisii and Meru after the Devonshire White Paper Report of 1923. By the time Kenya attained her independence in 1963, Coffee occupied a significant position in the economy of the nascent nation by among other things being a leading foreign exchange earner.

Ecological Requirements

Kenya coffee is grown from 1,200 to 2,100 m above sea level, with temperature ranging from 15 to 24 degrees Celsius, in deep and well drained red volcanic soils with annual rainfall ranging from 900 – 1,200 mm. Approximately 99% of Kenyan coffee is Arabica and the main cultivars are SL 28; SL 34; K7, Ruiru 11, Batian and traces of Blue Mountain.

Approximately 99% of Kenyan coffee is Arabica and the main cultivars are SL 28; SL 34; K7, Ruiru 11, Batian and traces of Blue Mountain.

Growing Areas

Coffee growing is categorized into small holder and estate sectors with the small holders grouped into co-operative societies with 33 out of 47 Counties in Kenya being coffee growing counties.

The main growing regionss include; Nairobi, Kiambu, Muranga, Nyeri, Kirinyaga, Embu, Meru, Machakos, Makueni, Taita Taveta, Kajiado, Nakuru Kericho, Nandi, Uasin Gishu, Elgeyo Marakwet ,Baringo, Trans Nzoia ,West Pokot, Narok, Bomet , Kisii, Nyamira, Migori, Homa Bay, Kisumu, Siaya, Busia and Bungoma. In total, about six million Kenyans are involved in coffee both directly and indirectly.

Coffee processing and grading

Kenya coffee is known all the world over because of its superior quality attributes which makes it a highly sought-after commodity by coffee roasters all over the world. This quality aspect is a product of many factors which include the climate, soils, coffee husbandry and processing among others. Red-ripe cherry is picked by hand, Its pulped, fermented, and dried in the natural sun to a moisture content of 10-11%.

The coffee beans are graded by passing them through screens with specific appetures both in width and shape. Kenyan coffee grades are E, AA, AB, PB C, TT, T, and MH/ML with Kenyan AA considered the best grade.

Coffee quality

Through a process called cupping, the expert tasters otherwise known as liquorers determine the quality by evaluating its aroma and flavor profile to identify the coffee characteristics. Kenyan coffee is known for its consistent rich flavor and deep, winey acidity and fragrant aroma infused with fruit and berry tones.

The “Connoisseurs Cup,”, has a resonant cup presence characterized by strong flavors with a dry, lemony zest or winey aftertaste. Quality Kenyan coffee is clean and crisp, and typically well balanced in taste, acidity, mouthfeel, and aftertaste. Lemony citrus, pepper, and blackberry tones.

Marketing of Kenya coffee

Kenya coffee is marketed through both the direct sale and the central auction on an estimated 25:75 percent proportion, servicing the traditional market, the upcoming market and the specialty niche market.

Kenya coffee is marketed through both the direct sale and the central auction on an estimated 25:75 percent proportion, servicing the traditional market, the upcoming market and the specialty niche market.

Our Partners