Burundi - Muramba
Washing Station: Muramba
Varietal: Red Bourbon
Altitude: 1,700 MASL
Notes: Citrus, Vanilla, Caramel and Chocolate
Angèle Ciza, Kalico’s Founder, was born and raised on a coffee plantation in the northern region of Burundi near the border of Rwanda and known as Kirundo. Her mother was her role model and taught her four basic principles: look, listen, think and not accept the fragility attributed to women - but rather work hard and help others.
As the only woman in Burundi who controlled all production, processing, and exporting of their coffee, Angèle Ciza championed a new wave of leadership with her Burundi-based company, Kalico. She believed that good coffee is achieved by using best practices in the nurseries and during picking - but by also investing in additional training, environmental protection, social infrastructure, and cost-sharing reductions for their producers. For her, investing in those who grow coffee, especially women, was essential to further developing Burundi.
In Burundi, women in some districts cannot inherit land, greatly inhibiting their ability to work in agriculture. Angele’s achievements, tenacity and unshakeable perseverance to build a successful career in the coffee industry is an inspiration to other women across Burundi.
In 2012, Angele Ciza founded Kalico, and was joined by her son, Alexandre Shaka Mugisha, the present Managing Director of the company, with the implementation of a digital traceability system to connect buyers with their coffee origins. Angele passed away in August 2022.
Alexandre is committed to the modernization of the business processes and to the preservation of the traditional values of the coffee company.
Kalico operates in Northeast Burundi, where five beautiful lakes meet in the provinces of Kirundo and Muyinga. Its flavours are greatly influenced by the unique conditions – the rich volcanic soils, high altitudes of 1,650-1,750m, and the winds that grace the Lakes region.
The company operates seven washing stations, and this coffee comes from the Muramba Washing Station. Built in 1984 - it is located around 1,720 masl with approximately 1500-1800mm rainfall per year. The washing station received coffee cherries from 285 smallholder producers (185 women and 100 men), who live all around the washing station and grow primarily Bourbon variety. The smallholder farmers are organized under “Terimbere” cooperative which means “Let’s move forward.”