Rwanda Abakundakawa, "We Who Love Coffee"

green beans Rwanda

"Abakundakawa" translates literally into "We Who Love Coffee", a motto of the women produced coffee co-op in Rwanda.

Hammerhead's latest offering comes from a women-produced Rwandan co-op. Coffee first arrived in the Central African country with German missionaries in 1904. After thirty years of cultivation, the Belgian colonial government of Rwanda required that every landowner grow coffee trees. In this forced agricultural model, most of the profits were siphoned off to the state. With very little profit there was no desire for Rwanda coffee tree growers to improve the quality of their products. Coffee prices and quality continued to decline until the devastating civil war that erupted in 1990.

President Juvenal Habyarimana from the Hutu tribe consolidated power by degrading and demonizing the Tutsi, another prominent Rwandan tribe. Up to one million innocent Tutsis and moderate Hutus were murdered in the four years the country spent torn by war. In 2000, almost a decade after the final waves of violence had settled, the Rwandan government turned back to their fertile soils and dormant coffee industry for economic stimulus. With advisers from other African nations, foreign investment, and hard work, the world has been blessed with the elegance of fair-trade, organic Rwandan coffee. Our new Rwanda Abakundakawa is grown and processed primarily by women from both the Hutu and Tutsi tribes, who invest back into their community and continue forging bonds decades after being pitted against one another. 

It is an honor to have these beans shipped all the way to our humble Bellingham coffee roastery; to celebrate, we’re hosted a month-long giveaway. Every order placed through our online coffee store received a free 4 oz bag of medium-roast Rwanda, featuring a silky, complex body, notes of jammy spice, grape and vanilla and a refined, blackcurrant acidity. Orders of $50 or more received free shipping as well as a 12oz bag of these excellent beans.