One of the coolest things about being in Mbale is that they grow coffee here. At one time they had a large and profitable coffee growing and processing industry. Due to war and lack of government support, the coffee industry has yet to make a full recovery.
Mbale is at an elevation of about 3,700-3,800 ft. and at the foot of the Mt Elgon mountain range which goes up to around 14,000 ft. When you leave Mbale headed up into the mountains you climb very quickly. In just a mile, you will climb as much as 2,000 ft. to an elevation of around 5,500 ft. These higher elevations makes for great coffee growing and you can find it all over. The coffee growers are very proud of the fact that they only grow Arabica coffee, which is considered to be the best type of coffee.
Now what does that mean to me you are asking? Well as it just so happens, I’m a coffee addict! Yes, I need my coffee. I can drink coffee all day long and even late into the evening. Now, I’m an old school kind of a guy. I like my coffee black. There is a part of me that thinks flavored coffee should be illegal. Now if you want to ruin a good cup of coffee with all that stuff that some people put in to their coffee I guess that, since you paid for it, you can do what you want to it. It just seems wrong to me. Like I said, I’m old school.
Being here in Mbale I’ve been able to take my old school way of making and looking at coffee to a whole new level. Bishop Gogo has started to grow his own coffee!!!! OH YEA!!!! His plants are just a year old and are producing beans for the first time. Right now he has about 50 plants and he wants to increase that to 200 plants. He is hoping to be able to grow, dry and roast his own beans to produce a better coffee than what’s available locally so that he can sell it at a better price in places like Mbale, Jinja and Kampala. If he is able to do that, it will be a great source of income for him and he plans to help others in the church do the same. So keep them in your prayers. They will need God to open the market doors for them to be able sell their coffee.
Now back to me and my old school ways. We have picked Bishops coffee, washed, dried and finally roasted the beans that he has grown by hand. We roasted the coffee beans over a fire in a pan, stirring them with a wooden spoon until what they call the second crack. Is that not so cool!
Oh yea I almost forgot! Now we are drinking our own homegrown and hand-roasted coffee, now that’s what I call old school!!!!!!
When coffee beans are taken care of and dried slowly and carefully, it really does produce a better cup of coffee. Now I get up in the morning, grind my fresh roasted beans and make myself one the best cup of coffee that you can get. All done the old school way.
For all my coffee loving friends out there, all I can say is
WISH YOU WHERE HERE!!!!!!!!