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Story:

Peru has all the conditions necessary to produce world-class coffee: Concentrated volumes of coffee growing at and above 1700 eters; a prominence of Typica, Bourbon, and Caturra; and a movement among the producing population away from subsidence-farming and toward quality coffee production.

As Peru is relatively new to the specialty-coffee world, a few challenges directly related to this matter still exist. Peru’s coffee culture isn’t as strong as other major producing companies; it has no national federation or coffee-grower institution like Colombia and Costa Rica do. Also, the distance between the farms and parchment delivery points in general is very significant, so farmers tend to wait for a full load before driving their coffee to town, which can negatively impact the quality. Infrastructure on farms is also in need of attention. Most farmers dry their coffees on tarps laid out on the ground. As more incentive for the production of coffee with high cup scores are put in place, we hope to see these challenges quickly disappear as Peru moves full-stride into the specialty-coffee world.

Although these challenges call for very clear and direct solutions, this hasn’t stopped Peru from producing some very impressive coffee year after year as evidenced by the establishment of the first Peruvian Cup of Excellence competition in 2017.

These Regional Select coffees from Peru are a result of that tireless effort: Producer lots are cupped and classified according to their quality. The 85+ coffees are placed into the Regional Select lots and the 87+ coffees are then further separated as Producer Microlots, highlighting Peru’s full potential.

 

History:

Finca Agua Sarca has been producing coffee for 70 years and is now run by the third generation of the family. Isacio Albir, the current owner, has focused on moving his coffee into the specialty category by making gradual changes, like improving the timing and quality of picking as well as paying more attention to processing. Isacio also has an Agronomist who looks after all the technical needs of the farm every day of the year. This intensive monitoring helps Isacio maintain the health and productivity of the farm under the highest standards.

General:

Nicaragua was planted with coffee in the late 1800s, but it wasn’t until the middle of the 19th century that the crop established itself as an important export: Increasing global demand—especially from North America—and diminished supply from the Pacific Islands contributed to a steady development of the coffee market here, and the first large plantations emerged in the Managua District around this time, spreading to Jinotepe, Matagalpa, Jinotega, and Nueva Segovia. The Nicaraguan government encouraged European immigrants from Italy and Germany to buy land for coffee, and until land redistribution created small parcels of land (typically smaller than 5 hectares), the majority of the coffee was controlled by white landowners who often exploited local labor with very low wages and poor conditions.

While its nearby neighbors of Costa Rica, El Salvador, and even Guatemala began emerging as specialty-coffee origins in the 1980s, Nicaragua’s political and economic instability through the long Nicaraguan Revolution period (roughly 1974–1990), as well as the destruction of Hurricane Mitch in 1998, are among the contributing factors that kept the country out of the specialty spotlight. The breaking up of larger estates into smallholder plots created some confusion and disjointedness among the agrarian sector through the ‘80s and into the early ‘90s; USAID and Fair Trade work in-country was instrumental in unifying small producers into cooperatives and grower societies.

While Nicaragua has historically been planted with good-performing varieties—Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, Maragogype, and other classic cultivars—areas of relatively low altitude (800–900 masl), the remoteness of the small farms, and battles with coffee-leaf rust in the past decade have remained obstacles in the way of the country achieving clear, prized single-origin status. The largest country in Central America, Nicaragua continues to develop its reputation as a coffee origin to watch, however: The crop is still its most important, accounting for over $1.2 billion in exports, and about 15 percent of the country’s labor force is somehow involved in the coffee sector.

Story:

Emilse’s farm, La Vega is in the South of Tolima almost on the border with Huila, in San Simon. Where the principal or main harvest happens from Mar-Aug. La Vega is situated in the mountains at an altitude of 1900 masl. Emilse is growing coffee along with other produce for home consumption, the coffee farm is 4 hectares and she is growing Colombia, Castillo and Caturra.

Processing

The coffee from Tolima is generally fully washed, meaning pulped and fermented the traditional way. There is a few exceptions where farmers are using eco-pulpers with mechanical removal of mucilage.

Dry fermentation is the most common and widely used method. The farmer will have a small beneficio, a small manual or electric pulper and a fermentation tank. They pulp the cherries in the afternoon. The coffees are going straight from the pulper in to the fermentation tank. At La Vega the coffee is fermented for 36 hours, depending on the temperature. Higher temperature will speed up the fermentation process, and lower temperature will slow it down. Some producers do intermediate rinsing with water, that can also help them control the process.

Washing and grading: they normally stir the coffees in tanks or small channels before they remove the floaters. For the ones without channels it’s common to wash the coffees in the fermentation tank and skim off the floaters before it goes to the drying.

Drying: For the smallholders in regions like Tolima the coffees are commonly sun dried in parabolic dryers that almost works as green houses. The better producers have well ventilated facilities.

Story:

Shakiso is close to Kochere in Yirgacheffe, that year after year produces amazing qualities. This in particular stood out on the cupping table in Addis as having all the fruit one could wish for in a naturalwith 89 cupping score.

Shakiso is a washing station in Derikidame, Hambela, West Guji. 650 farmers deliver cherry to the washing station. The soil type is fertile, red brown.

For the natural process: the cherries are dried in the sun on so called „African drying beds“for approx. 18-21 days. In the daytime he cherries need to be raked permanently in order to ensure consistent drying process. In the day time , it will be coved from 1 to 3pm in order to protect hot sun, as well as, when the night comes the beds are carefully covered to protect it from rain fall.

Coffee production has been something of a roller coaster in Burundi, with wild ups and downs: During the country’s time as a Belgian colony, coffee was a cash crop, with exports mainly going back to Europe or to feed the demand for coffee by Europeans in other colonies. Under Belgian rule, Burundian farmers were forced to grow a certain number of coffee trees each—of course receiving very little money or recognition for the work. Once the country gained its independence in the 1960s, the coffee sector (among others) was privatized, stripping control from the government except when necessary for research or price stabilization and intervention. Coffee farming had left a bad taste, however, and fell out of favor; quality declined, and coffee plants were torn up or abandoned. After the civil war–torn 1990s and the nearly total devastation of the country’s economy, coffee slowly emerged as a possible means to recover the agrarian sector and increase foreign exchange. In the first decade of the 2000s, inspired in large part by neighboring Rwanda’s success rebuilding
through coffee, Burundi’s coffee industry saw an increase in investment, and a somewhat healthy balance of both privately and state-run coffee companies and facilities has created more opportunity and stability, and has helped Burundi establish itself as an emerging African coffee-growing country, despite its small size and tumultuous history.
Mutsinda Washing Station is located in the province of Kayanza. Farmers here own less than
half a hectare of land, on average, and in addition to growing coffee, they also grow crops like
bananas, beans, yams, taro, and cassava, both for sale and for household use.
Due to the small size and yield on the average coffee farm or plot, washing stations are the
primary point of purchase this coffee in Burundi. Unlike other coffee-growing regions in
Central and South America where landholdings are slightly larger and coffee-centric
resources are more available, most producers do not have space on their property or the
financial means to do their wet- or dry-milling. Instead, the majority of growers deliver cherry
to a facility that does sorting, blending, and post-harvest processing of day lots to create
different offerings.
We can find more than 50 washing stations around this region. In general the coffes from this
station are having cleanest cups, and most of them are high-quality. While the logistics of
buying coffees from Burundi are extremely challenging, we can find heavy figgy, fruity, and
lively coffees here, with a firm support of acidity.

Gakundu factory was founded in 1964, and is operated by the Gakundu Farmers Cooperative Society (F.C.S.), which has more than 1,200 active smallholder farmer members. The average farmer owns less than 1/2 hectare of land, and in addition to growing coffee they grow other crops like corn, beans, potatoes and sweet potatoes, cassava, bananas, and arrowroot. Coffees in Kenya are typically traceable to the factory level, where smallholder farmers deliver cherry for sale and processing. Producers deliver their cherry and receive payment based on weight at the market level for the day. After the coffee is received by the F.C.S., it is sorted and processed into lots that are built by quantity, so it is nearly impossible to know which farmers' coffees end up in which particular lot.Because of the very small average farm size, there is typically not a way to keep more-detailed records at the factory level, without adding miles of paperwork and delay.This is one of the reasons it is difficult to find highly traceable coffees from Kenya.
Farmers deliver their coffee cherry the same day its harvested, and conduct a hand sort at the factory to remove any fruit that is not perfectly ripe. The cherry is depulped with a four-disc depulper before being fermented overnight for 15–23 hours, then it is washed three times using fresh water from a nearby river. It is sent through channels to soaking tanks, where the coffee is held until there is space on the drying tables. Drying on the tables can take between 7–15 days, and the coffee is turned and rotated constantly to achieve even drying.

Story:
In Usulutan, on top of the Tepaca volcano, you can find Los Pirineos owned by the producer Gilberto Baraona. It’s located on a volcanic mountain range surrounded by the cities of Berlin, Santiago de Maria and Joy. The farm is in an area with a great cool climate for slow maturation, good rainfall and fertile volcanic soils. The cultivation of coffee at the farm was started in 1890 and according to family accounts, the original seeds of the property, and the mother plants were imported from Antigua Guatemala. The coffee is separated into small to medium sized batches based up on different parts of the farm and coffee varietals. Currently the farm cultivates the varietals Bourbon Elite, Pacas and Pacamara, but the farm has also taken part in a Procafe project growing different varietals. As a result they have plots of of native coffee trees, natural mutants and hybrids originated from all over the world. Los Pirineos farm was one of the pioneers in El Salvador to build its own Micro Coffee Mill. The producer still experiments with processing and drying methods.
Production process: Well-trained pickers are given good incentives to select ripe cherries only. The coffee is brought to the Los Pirineos micro mill in the afternoon to be hand sorted of unripes and over ripes.

Honey process: They use new Jotagallo eco pulpers with mechanical demucilager to remove the skin, pulp and about 70% of the mucilage. The parchment is soaked over night in clean water before it’s washed.

Drying: Sun dried under shade on raised beds for 3-4 weeks..
Soil: Sandy loam, Volcanic soils
Grade: Screen 15 up, zero defects.

Story:
This coffee is created through a joint effort from the Garcia family. Antonio Wander and Andre Luiz Garcia are father and son. Agriculture is part of the family history, Antonio’s grandfather, Alexander Capelo Garcia was small a coffee producer, and Antonio became an IBC research Agronomist specializing in the area of fertility and nutrition. He has dedicated his whole life to knowing and producing coffee. Now, he has the support from his son André who is also an agronomist, researcher at Procafé Foundation specializing in pruning and producing coffees. The farm is situated next to Sao Joao del Rei, a very important historic town in the colonization of Brazil and famous due to the gold mining and have historically not had the tradition of coffee production. With a predominance of mountains at high altitudes (for being Brazil) the coffee trees have adapted very well. The soil type on the farm is red/yellow, volcanic with medium texture typical of the savanna region. They are growing Acaia, Yellow Catuai, Yellow Catucai and Mundo Novo. Andre’s work with Procafe gives him good insight into varieties and how they can be grown on his own farm. They are only processing coffee as Naturals, but are young and adventurous with experimenting within this realm of processing.

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