Ikizere Washed Processing at Fugi
Cherries are brought to Fugi washing station within a few hours of picking, and undergo intensive hand-sorting to ensure only the ripest cherry is selected. These cherries then undergo multiple rounds of floating to remove the less dense
coffees. The highest quality cherries are placed in sealed bags and left for overnight for approximately 12 hours.
In the case of Ikizere coffees, as they were manually depulped, the cherries are left to soak for 10 hours to soften them from the seed and aid in separating the skin from the mucilage and seed.
After manual depulping, coffee moves directly to the grading channels. Here the coffee is rigorously washed to remove any remaining mucilage and separated by density. After grading, the coffees are soaked (now with nearly no mucilage attached) in a tank of water for a final 8 to 12 hours. This is thought to promote even distribution of moisture throughout the seeds, thus leading to more even drying.
Coffee is then moved onto shaded drying beds for 48 - 72 hours. During the first 5 days on the tables, parchment is only exposed to sunlight for a maximum of 3 hours per day, and it is manually turned every 30 minutes to avoid cracking from overly fast drying. It’s finally moved onto drying beds in full sun and turned 4 times per day.
Temperature is closely monitored throughout the day - if it exceeds certain thresholds, workers will focus on turning coffee more frequently or cover the beds with mesh netting.
When the moisture content reaches 11.0%, the drying phase is considered complete. The parchment is bagged and stored in a dry warehouse until time for milling.
Total drying times for washed process coffee is around 30 - 40 days.