Growing region: Nariño
Growing Altitude: 1,800 m.a.s.l.
Preparation: Washed, 20 hours fermentation
Coffee type: Castillo, Colombia, Caturra
Grown in the north east municipality of La Unión in Nariño, close to the mountainous hills of Cerro El Dinde we are excited to bring this coffee from a small co-op of neighbours who have worked together to produce this coffee. The area is home to generations of farmers who alongside coffee, also farm beans, corn, yucca, and various fruits. The fertile land lends itself well to the growing of coffee trees, providing the crop with the high quality nutrition needed to produce a great harvest. The families who have produced this lot pay high attention to detail in their processing methods, and are committed to continually educating themselves on better practices and even greater quality in their final cup.
We buy this coffee from Portilla’s Cafe which was set up by a Colombian-Irish couple helping their family in Colombia near the Ecuador border to sell their exceptional quality coffees to Europe. Via direct trade the farmers get paid about twice as much, enabling them to earn a living, develop the farm, and keep producing this wonderful coffee for us.
Coffee farmers are facing challenges unimaginable for us in the developed world. The objective of the project is simple, helping the farmers producing high-quality green coffee and secure better options for the farmers to sell their produce.
The farmers conduct ‘Selective Picking’. This is where only the ripe cherries are harvested and are picked individually by hand. The pickers rotate among the trees every 8 to 10 days. They pick the cherries which are at the peak of ripeness. This is a very labor intensive process. At the end of each day, the day’s harvest is transported to the processing plant. The coffee is processed using the ‘wet method’ – using water to separate the seed from the pulp. After the coffee is processed there are two further steps before coffee is ready for exporting. These steps include drying the coffee beans and milling the beans. At both of these steps workers picking out defective beans by hand so only the perfect beans are processed further.