|Guests admire the fine float tanks at Heza washing station.|
54 participants, including 10 women, toured three washing stations to learn and observe processes that strengthen quality. The participants were primarily from Dusangirijambo, but included also leaders from SOGESTAL Kayanza, Kirimi station and Long Miles Coffee washing station called “Heza”.
The tour was a unique opportunity compare and contrast processes and infrastructure at 3 different washing stations in the same zone, Kayanza, but with different ownership structure:
- · SOGESTAL is private and state owned
- · Heza (Long Miles Coffee) is privately owned
- · Dusangirijambo is a cooperative under the COCOCA umbrella of Burundian cooperatives
At the end the group received a tour of the HOROMAMA dry mill (formerly Webcor) and there was a formal presentation and small celebration at the dry mill also.
|Coffee warehouse doubles as mushroom farm... hmm.|
|No evidence of Lean "6S" tool in use here.|
|Best practice is for parchment to be stored 30cm from the wall.|
Jeremy (Heza manager) thinks Dusan and SOGESTAL staff especially appreciated learning about the following innovations at Heza (Long Miles Coffee):
- Paying money for building high-quality floating tanks
- On-site manufacturing of organic manure to save money
- The double and triple-layer-tables drying system for saving space for coffee drying
- Recycling system for water
- Pipe from the top of the hill, where coffee is delivered, down to the machine, as a help to farmers
These are innovations Heza had implemented before Artisan arrived in January 2017 and began lean training in Burundi. They are excellent examples of ‘lean thinking’, however, and therefore they were important initiatives for Dusangirijambo to see. THANK YOU - MURAKOZE - to Long Miles Coffee - Heza, for their generous sharing.
Dusangirijambo had the opportunity to share the new signage they’ve installed and their new machine, new grading channels and water recycling pits that are still under construction. The signage is directly related to Lean concepts – the other items relate to other projects the cooperative is engaged in, such as receiving Rainforest Alliance certification.
From the photos of Heza above, compared to the photos below, one can imagine the process and infrastructure improvements the Dusangirijambo leaders may now be considering for the upcoming, 2018, season.
September is “the start” of the coffee season in this region – a good time to make plans and start new things. For example, the float tanks at Dusangirijambo require sorting in small batches, because the baskets are small. It requires a lot of bending over and makeshift “catchments” for the floaters (the waste).
Lean practices emphasize eliminating wasted motion and wasted time. Not only could the processes for the farmers after they arrive at the washing station be improved (for example with large, solid float tanks and a reception area paved with concrete), but the time required to sort and process cherry at the reception area of the station could be reduced if the farmers arrived with bags of cherry that had fewer defects. What if the average bag of cherry arriving at the washing station was 90% perfectly red-ripe cherry instead of only 75%? What kind of lowered costs and increased profits might accrue to the cooperative? These are the kinds of questions employee groups are asked to consider as they design their KAIZEN projects. Dusangirijambo’s employees got very excited when Artisan worked with them in April 2017 to design a new cherry quality metric to be implemented before weighing
The “Lean Tour Day” ended at the HOROMAMA dry mill in Kayanza. Many participants had never seen a dry mill operation before. The HOROMAMA dry mill has implemented a “Lean Specialists” committee since their leaders attended Artisan’s lean training. Several clues indicate lean practices, such as painted guidelines on the floor and an emphasis on cleanliness (cloth under visitors’ shoes in lower right photo) and safety (safety gear on worker).