Sumatra, Indonesia - Kayu Aro Wet HulledContrabean Roasting Company
Kayu Aro - Wet Hulled
Awesome Single Origin Espresso, Brew or Pour Over
Caramel, orange, kiwi, honey, lemongrass, raisin
The flavor profile is incredibly clean and lively, with notes of kiwi, orange, and lemongrass balanced by caramelly sweetness and cardamom.
This coffee is sourced from family-owned farms organized around an export company and mill called PT. AgroTropic Nusantara (AGTN), which has been working with coffee producers since 2013 in the Kayu Aro highlands of the Kerinci regency within the Jambi province on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia.
AGTN has established an association of 680 producers who cultivating coffee on parcels of 1 hectare or less around the Kerinci valley’s edge near Mount Kerinci, the highest volcano in Indonesia and home to the Sumatran tiger. Through coffee AGTN has focused on supporting increased employment opportunities for women, which includes a woman, Emma Fatma, as the director of operations. Women are also running the coffee nursery program and handsorting at the dry mill.
Speaking of the nursery, AGTN has distributed over 1 million seedlings to the general area in recent years. Some of the original proponents of arabica production and agroforestry programming, Emma, Muljadi, and Sukianto have consistently pushed for abundant shade cover, reduction of herbicide and pesticide use, and organic fertilization programs. While many coffee shrubs are cut at times when coffee cherry prices are unsustainably low, they’ve also promoted pruning over complete stumping or uprooting of plants so that farmers will have a backup once prices inevitably recover.
Their wet mill at Sungai Lintang in particular has been developing and adding capacity over the past few years and is now able to process 25 metric tons of cherry per day during peak harvest. Each of the processing areas from flotation to pulping and fermentation are separate, and the effluent waste from processing is held in tanks and filtered before being released. Waste material is used for compost, mulch, or animal feed. Unripe and underdeveloped cherries are separated by flotation, pulped, density-sorted in a channel, and fermented with fresh water. Finished coffee is then dried under parabolic covers either on clean patios or raised beds, then held in parchment or pod in their curing area to redistribute moisture evenly.
Another factor in maintaining quality and providing technical assistance is AGTN’s cherry selection and purchasing process. While it is low-tech, the ‘plate method’ is effective. A standard 30cm dinner plate is filled with cherry. If only 3 green/unripe cherries are found, the picker gets top price. 4-6 gets middle price, and 7+ is rejected. As a result, folks tend to bring in their best selections, and only pick when ripe. Cherry is accepted from known farmers only, and if they want to participate, they need to register.