Another stunning, exciting Burundi offering coming from the Long Miles Coffee Project, “Gishubi is a stone’s throw away from the indigenous Kibira forest. The cool mist of the forest breathes daily onto the coffee trees. Its slightly cooler micro-climate makes the beans of Gishubi grow and mature slower, which sets the Gishubi cup apart. Sadly, the hill’s proximity to the forest has meant that during times of conflict it becomes a permanent theater of war. Armed groups have often hidden in the forest and forcefully collected people’s possessions, crops and livestock. During times of conflict farmers have no choice but to abandon their fields and children are not able to go to school.
When Long Miles started working with Gishubi farmers, many of them were ready to uproot their coffee trees and abandon their farms. Farming families have experienced loss of an unimaginable kind, which has made it difficult for them to spend money on their coffee trees or buy organic fertilizer for their farms. Coffee scout Alphonse started roaming Gishubi hill daily, sharing his agronomic knowledge on growing quality coffee with farmers.
Because of Alphonse’s dedication, farmers are now reinvesting in their coffee by looking for land to plant more coffee trees. His vision is for all farmers on Gishubi hill to plant shade trees and for them to bring quality cherries to the washing station. He also wants to work together with farmers to eliminate the number of antestia bugs, the colorful critters thought to be linked to spreading the potato defect, found in farmers’ coffee trees.”