Ejo Heza, Rwanda
Producer: Ejo Heza Female Cooperative
Location: Rutsiro District, Western Province, Rwanda
Harvest Season: Summer 2019
Tasting Notes: orange, grapefruit, mango
Processing: Fully Washed
Kopakama is an independent, worker-owned coffee cooperative located off the shores of Lake Kivu, in the Rutsiro district of Rwanda. Here, the producer owners take advantage of their elevation and lakeside microclimate to produce some of the highest quality Bourbón coffee cherries in the region. After picking, the producers bring their coffee fruit to one of two washing stations, where the producers de-pulp, ferment and carefully wash and grade their coffees. The attention paid in these steps is one of the main reasons this coffee stands out among the crowd in a region known for spectacular coffee.
Ritual decided to work with Kopakama this year, not only because they produce the best coffee around, but also because Kopakama does a great job of supporting their community. Since 1998, the women owner producers, have collectivized into a sub-cooperative, Ejo Heza. Meaning 'beautiful tomorrow', the profits made from their coffee sales go directly back to the women who produced the coffee.
Additionally, they organize to provide technical support to those in need and offer financial support for a community where money handling is done mostly by men. Here, Ritual pays a quality bonus to complement the premium paid by our sourcing partner - the proceeds going back to both the producer owners of the cooperative at large, with additional premiums supporting Ejo Heza.