The Aranga farmers live on the slopes of Mt. Meru in northern Tanzania. The fertile, volcanic soil provides the ideal environment for growing the fragile Arabica plants without much artificial intervention. The Aranga group was formed by 10 farmers who broke away from a mismanaged cooperative to establish a more democratic governing system and focus on quality upgrading. Now, with years of agronomic skills training, advanced processing and peer monitoring methods, they can finally bring out the coffee fruit’s full potential: floral aromas, dark berry acidities and an especially intense vanilla mouthfeel.
Arabica Bourbon (Jackson, Mbirizi) and Kent
1,500 - 1,700 meters above sea level
working towards organic certification (2016) by the Tanzania Organic Agriculture Movement (TOAM), shade grown, farmer owned and farmer-run cooperative, actively seeks participation of women in coop activities.
double wet fermentation. Cherries are depulped using simple hand-pulpers and strictly washed the same day they are picked. They are then double wet-fermented (2x 18 hours), shade dried, and then sun dried on raised beds.
GrainPro bags in This Side Up-marked 60kg burlap bags.
Easily roastable for dark roasts due to its balanced, unobtrusive acidities and medium-full body. Drip roasts bring out some floral aromas and dark berry sweetness, but espresso roasts especially highlight the Aranga's
spicy sweetness and silky vanilla mouthfeel.
PRICE BREAKDOWN (EUR/KG)
the price you pay for Aranga AB p/kg. We paid $6,41 (or €5,72) in total for the green coffee, which is 2,07 x the Fair Trade base price. We agreed on this price directly with the farmers, disregarding the volatile US Coffee C price.
€3,46 + €0,86 + €0,30 +
the price we paid p/kg to the farmers of Aranga Coffee Group through direct bank transfer. €0,86 is their management and storage fee; €3,46 is our price for home-washed and dried parchment coffee (as p/kg green coffee price) - straight in the farmers' hands. €0,30 is a premium we used to renew Aranga's export license in 2015, and this year to buy a moisture meter for the coop.
€0,18 + €0,81 +
dry-milling costs to Rafiki Coffee Ltd. in Moshi + local transport costs to Dar es Salaam.
€1,19 + €0,05 +
sea freight, clearance and warehousing costs from Dar Es Salaam to Rotterdam + Tanzania Coffee Board export tax.
This Side Up margin and expense coverage. Around 28% of the total price. Costs include sending samples, sales costs, travel and other company expenses.
Aranga can be reached by email or by phone. Aranga is also happy to have visitors to show around their coffee farms and host in their village, close to the city of Arusha and to numerous national parks.
CONTACT Gideon Ndewario / Rebecca Trupin
EMAIL email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
TEL +255 756 717 521 / +1 917 783 3014
Aranga Coffee Group, Nkoaranga, Arumeru District, Arusha Region, Tanzania
The Aranga farmers live on the lush green slopes of Mt. Meru in northern Tanzania, not far from the safari destination Arusha National Park. The fertile, volcanic soil provides the ideal environment for growing the fragile Arabica plants without much artificial intervention. The Kent and Bourbon cultivars were first introduced by German colonists more than a hundred years ago, and many of these ancient plants survived despite years of abandon – the wide girth of the trunks of some of the coffee trees are a testament to their age. More importantly, the roots of these old trees run deep and are able to effectively absorb volcanic minerals that make for healthy and full-flavoured cherries with complex acidities.
The Aranga Coffee Group is a testament to the initiative and determination of small holder farmers. Ten founding members broke away from a mismanaged cooperative to find better markets and establish a more transparent and democratic governing system. Formally registered in 2002, the group enshrined weekly meetings to keep all members informed of the group’s business doings, make decisions collectively, and meet with a local agronomist to learn improved farming techniques. Over a decade later, these investments have paid off. Aranga boasts some of the best coffee to be found anywhere in Tanzania and has a remarkably successful and transparent business. The members – now 28 in number – are true artisans of their coffee and drink it themselves, which is a rarity for the East African region, outside of Ethiopia. Aranga members are subsistence farmers. Each family has 0.5 to 2 acres which they farm in the traditional local method of intercropping. Coffee trees are interspersed with banana trees, whose broad leaves provide sufficient shade from the equatorial sun.
The Aranga Coffee Group is also unusual in its involvement of women. In Tanzania, men traditionally own coffee trees. At Aranga, women make up 11 of the 28 members and hold several key leadership positions.
Rebecca Trupin met the Aranga group in 2012. Rebecca is half-Tanzanian, half-American, and has roots in neighboring Kilimanjaro region. She was looking for successful cooperative models to help farmers in her mother’s village, and the Aranga group readily agreed to help, meeting with Rebecca’s farmers and sharing their constitution and methods.
Rebecca has been looking for ways to connect Aranga and other farmer groups to buyers in the US and Europe. She met Lennart in early 2014. The relationship started with Lennart simply helping out with explaining things like coffee contracts and the shipping process, still thinking that Rebecca was to import coffee to the United States. After sending a sample in March 2014 that yielded promising results, Rebecca was even more driven to document Aranga’s activities and work towards the first export. When she then sent the 2015 season’s sample to Lennart and Paul (Sweet Cup) in February, they were blown away by the cup’s floral aromas, dark berry acidities and especially its full and intense vanilla mouthfeel. This is when we decided to offer Aranga in Europe. Our occasional phone calls evolved into intensive cooperation in two years time, and we’re proud to have the coffee in our warehouse to show for it now!
The first Aranga shipment successfully made it to Amsterdam in June of 2015. Aranga used the premium from this shipment for the cooperative’s development fund which went towards purchasing the land they currently rent for their demonstration plot and nursery. Another significant project going forward is improving and standardizing Aranga’s coffee processing system. The group has achieved excellent quality without large scale machinery or a washing station – each farmer wet-processes coffee individually before the cooperative comes together to bring coffee to the miller. This shows their potential to achieve even greater results with good equipment.
We are getting started right away – at a meeting during Lennart's visit in January, the farmers decided that This Side Up's 2016 premium will be used to centralise the group's processing activities: instead of processing at each farmer's house individually, they will create four pulping, washing and drying stations by expanding some of the members' current stations. We will also finance a moisture meter that will further aid the group in homogenising the humidity levels of the parchment coffee before it is shipped to the dry mill. We expect that these measures will result in a significant increase in the amount of AA and AB grades that can be produced next season. - Rebecca Trupin
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