Organic CoffeeOrganic coffee is grown in a soil free from artificial chemicals. The farmers use natural pesticide and fertilizers, which is better for the environment, the coffee and the farmers’ health than their artificial counterpart. For growing organic coffee, Aranga Coffee Group has gotten new trees from the Tanzanian Coffee Research Institute (TaCRI), that have a genetic resistance to the most common pests in the area. These trees also have the benefit of producing almost 50% more beans than the old coffee trees, and the farmers save the cost of artificial pesticides and fertilizers.
Traditional CoffeeOur traditional coffee is non-organic. The trees produce less coffee, but has about the same taste as the organic coffee. On these trees, the farmers are using artificial fertilizer and pesticides, but some of the farmers have started applying the organic methods of farming, even to their old trees. The Aranga Coffee Group is in a transitional process of planting new trees and turning all of their crops into organic coffee. This process is slow because a tree takes around two years from planting before it starts to produce a good quantity of coffee beans. In the meantime, the farmers depend on the traditional coffee to get a sufficient income from their crops.
Transition to TaCRI OrganicOne of the farmers in Aranga Coffee Group got training in growing organic coffee at TaCRI, and has spread the knowledge to the rest of the group. The Aranga Coffee Group share knowledge with each other, and together they make good tasting coffee every season.
Wild Tracks and Aranga Coffee Group is working together with Tanzania Organic Agriculture Movement (TOAM) to get the East African Organic Certification called Kilimohai. In a few years, when all the coffee is produced organic, we will apply for the European Certification Standard to get the EU and the Norwegian Debio approval. This type of certification is expensive, but we hope to get the familiar organic certifications to show our consumers that our coffee is organic.