Neighbors & crops
Altitude: 1750 M.A.S.L
When you ask Doña Olga how and why she started growing coffee, you get the kind of answers you wish you heard more often. 9 years ago, Olga (65) and her husband Guillermo decided to recover the traditional values of her grandparents. They returned to the countryside to repossess the coffee-growing tradition in which she was born and raised. In gratitude for the land, she received, and “out of respect for my grandmother”, Doña Olga felt it was her duty to continue the family tradition.
When her grandmother died 23 years ago, she inherited a 2-hectare farm located in the village of San Isidro. The farm lays at 1750 meters above sea level. Once recuperating the farm Olga decided to name the land “La Abuela” (“The grandmother”). 14 years later, when her husband was able to retire and receive a pension, they decided they were ready to start a new life on the farm. From that moment on, they’ve been living from their 5000 coffee trees, plantain trees, and rabbit breeding.
Before selling their best coffee cherries to LA PALMA & EL TUCÁN, Olga and Guillermo sold their parchment coffee to the National Federation of Coffee (FNC). Eventually, they started roasting a small part of their production, later developing their own retail brand “1750” to be able to sell roasted coffee to friends and family: “1750”, referring to the altitude of their farm.
As many of the growers in our region, Olga and Guillermo told us the difficulties they have been facing for the last couple of years. For example, finding it difficult to find skilled labor that can guarantee quality cherry-picking. They also struggled with coffee processing maintenance at their age. That is why for the harvest of 2014, they decided to join the Neighbors & Crops program which focuses on growing the best possible coffee cherries in order to receive a better price per kg. They also managed to save resources and have more time for themselves. We intend to continue helping coffee growers in our region attain more personal dependence and a better way of life!
This kind of fermentation is classified as ‘Anaerobic’ as oxygen has minimal interaction with the cherry. Once the cherries arrive at the mill, they are hand sorted and placed in sealed tanks. With no oxygen involved, bacteria feed on carbohydrates present in the mucilage favoring a higher concentration of Lactic Acid, creating a unique profile of the resulting cup.
The Honey Process begins with a pre-fermentation stage of 45 hours at the wet mill. From here the cherries will start the de-pulping stage, passing through three stages of quality control before removing a percentage of the skin. While the drying stage, coffee will be placed in African-style raised beds for over 15 days. Due to the levels of sugar and moisture, the first days will be crucial to avoid microbial activity prolongation. Finally parchment coffee will pass through the mechanical drying machines to end up the drying process.
This method involves a combination of stages found in lactic and acetic processing methods. First, all hand-sorted cherries will go through a short pre-fermentation step. Similar to lactic processing, the cherries are placed in airtight fermentation tanks with limited oxygen. Once removed from the tanks, we pass them through three levels of quality control before having the skin removed by a pulper machine. From there, we leave the beans resting in the fermentation tanks to undergo an acetic fermentation, agitating them from time to time. Once the process is completed, the beans are transferred to African-style raised beds to begin the drying phase.
Our Mixed Fermentation Processing produces a very balanced cup profile with medium to heavy body.
Through the Bioinnovation process, La Palma & El Tucán honors the main principles of organic farming. They first capture and reproduce microorganisms found in their farm’s beautiful forests, to create their own fermentation substrate. Then, they mix this substrate with perfectly ripen geisha cherries, in a clay pot for 100 hours. This combination allows them to create a sustainable closed cycle. After the fermentation, they remove the leftovers and reuse them as compost.
If you wish to request additional information about the processing of your microlot, such as fermentation time or type of drying, please let us know by filling this form.
We will get back to you soon with detailed information.
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