New Wet Mill
A big part of the Ulian Project is the new wet mill. As a discrete, private business entity, the mill will purchase freshly picked cherries from farmers and pickers on the spot and process them to be sold as raw, un-roasted coffee beans.
There will be a sliding-scale pay grade based on cherry quality; the higher the quality of cherries picked, i.e. the more red cherries, the higher the price paid to the farmer (unfortunately, the decision was made not to pay for higher-quality cherries).
By purchasing the cherries with cash immediately
and by paying more for higher quality, we hope to achieve the following:
- Get the farmer needed money immediately.
Incentivize the farmers to pay the pickers more
The image below is the first in a series that you can view by clicking on the right or left edges of the image. This will keep the images small enough for you to read the explanations on the right, which you can also click through to view.
Or you can click on one image and it will open a larger version and again, you can click on the edges of the larger images to continue through the slideshow.
- The pavilion roof collects rain water that is fed into the water tank.
- Construction was completed within six months!
- Overall processing capacity doubled over previous year.
- Coffee washing machine reduces the number of people needed to wash from 3-4 to 1
- Watch the machine in action on my Youtube channel
- Improved the fermentation process by implementing starter cultures
- Improve mill hygiene
- Increase fermentation capacity
- Increase number of smaller tanks
- Increase drying capacity
Equip the lab/cupping roomTheir desired quality level does not require a cupping lab
The first structure built for the mill was the pavilion where a lot of the processing will occur. Under the pavilion will be scales, sorting tables,pulper machines, and washing and fermentation tanks.
The roof of the pavilion has a rainwater collection system that is used to fill the water tank. During the rainy season, the tank was filled within a week!
- Think of the flavor of an unripe banana that lacks sweetness and tastes, well, unripe.
The water tank has a capacity in the thousands of gallons. It is mostly underground and built of cement then lined with a paint-on water-proofing material. Once the tank was completed it was capped with a cement man-hole for later maintenance.
A two-story residence was built with the mill and I call it Chez Bule (Bule, pronounced ‘Booh-lay’, is the Indonesian term for foreigner, especially caucasian foreigners). The first floor has
a kitchenette/cupping room miscellaneous storage along with a bathroom (with western-style toilette, yay!). The second floor has a bed and wardrobe.
One of the last things to be completed was a large patio for drying beans. The beans will remain on the patio for around two weeks, depending on the weather so it needs to be large in order to keep day lots* separated and organized.
- “Day lots” is a term for all the coffee processed in one day. It is useful to keep lots separated as different elevations are harvested at different weeks and elevation is one way to designate different quality tiers for different products.