Plentiful Rain and Rich Soil Mbeya is considered the first mild Arabica producing region, producing 12,000 to 15,000 tons annually. The abundant rainfall and rich volcanic soils allow the region to produce beautiful beans with light to medium acidity, medium body and chocolate flavor. Download Fact Sheet
Mbeya has been referred to as the Scotland of Africa because of its beautiful hillsides of ferns and heather. Much of the region still hasn’t been thoroughly explored by scientists, and a new species of monkey, the Kipunji was discovered in the region in 2005.
River Basins and Mountain Slopes Mbeya has a subtropical highland climate with humid summers and dry winters. Temperatures range from 6 degrees Celsius in the highlands and 29 degrees Celsius in the lowlands. The terrain in the area is mixed; farms can be found on the gentle slopes of river basins as well as the steeper slopes of Mt. Mbeya.
Coffee from Cooperatives Several farmer cooperatives provide our beans in Mbeya—Hasambo Amcos, based just outside Mbozi, has 650 farmers. The group was established in 1993 as a cooperative and started to operate independently in 2002. Mwalyego is another grower group based in Iwala village, and has 150 farmers. Mwalyego has consistently produced high quality coffee and is a regular contestant in the Taste of Harvest competition. Mimba Estate has around 300 acres of coffee and produces fully washed Arabica coffee. The estate is run and managed by the Swiss owner Joseph who has been running the farm for over 25 years. Itende coffee estate is a 200 acre coffee farm run by the Tanzanian army based just outside Mbeya city and has been in operation for over 60 years.
Co-op Owned Wet Mills All of the cooperatives we work with operate independent wet mills. During harvest the farmers bring their cherries to the mill every evening. Ripe cherries pass through the wet mill and are fermented for 24 to 48 hours. After fermentation, the coffee is washed then taken to raised drying tables and left to air dry for 7 to 10 days. Once the parchment is dry the coffee is taken to one of the three dry mills in the area. The cooperative will usually wait until they close their season before they issue the parchment for milling.

Improving Facilities
Mwalyego farmer cooperative is made up of around 150 farmer members who are based in the village of Iwala just 25 km from the city of Mbeya. We have been working with Mwalyego for seven years on various projects, including providing training on good agricultural practices. We have also invested in improving facilities, funded equipment such as drying tables and a new coffee pulping unit, and we provide access to agro inputs like fertilizer and agro chemicals.
Pulping Machines and More
Investing in Equipment and infrastructure has been an important part of our presence in Mbeya. We've supported farmers in the purchase of pulping machines, personal protective equipment for farmers, sprayers and the construction of buildings and storage. Our field officers and trainers regularly visit farmers in the region to deliver training materials and practical demonstrations in good agricultural practices and bookkeeping.
Southern Highlands Coffee Coffee HARVESTING JULY-AUG 2016 Flavors of chocolate, caramel, and berries, with a medium body and a floral, citrus scent make this a complex and pleasing cup.
  • Flavor Chocolate, berry, caramel
  • Body Medium smooth
  • Acidity Medium
  • 1 - Fragrance/Aroma
  • 2 - Flavor
  • 3 - Acidity
  • 4 - Balance
  • 5 - Body
  • 6 - Aftertaste
  • 7 - Overall
  • Cupping Score: 84+
  • Quality: Southern Highlands
  • Producer: Carefully selected farms from the Mbeya community
  • Variety: Bourbon and Kent
  • Processing: Fully washed
  • Altitude: 1,600 meters ASL
  • Harvest: July to August
  • Packing: 65lb box  What’s this?
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