This coffee is part of the Farm Select program with Banexport in Colombia, an initiative that aims to support producers with the tools they need to improve their coffee quality, gain access to better prices, and make lasting connections with committed specialty buyers. Through its Farm Select program standards and protocols, Banexport identifies producers who are willing to utilize advanced techniques and technology in order to produce a better cup; provides them with education and support toward that end; and, through a close and collaborative partnership with Cafe Imports, connects them with buyers who are interested in developing mutually beneficial, long-term and reliable buying relationships.
The Farm Select program has several specific elements, including:
• The use of Brix and pH meters for optimal harvesting and fermentation
• Farm soil analysis and fertilization guidance
• Sensory analysis training and support
• Fixed per-pound pricing for producers above both the C market price and the daily market price set by the FNC in Colombia
• Training and higher compensation for pickers on Farm Select farms ($600 pesos per kilo compared with the national standard $300 pesos)
Carlos Gustavo Gonzales Quira owns a 1.8-hectare farm called Bella Vista, where he gows several different varieties of coffee. Great care is taken to harvest the coffees when they are ripe: The Caturra and Typica are harvested when the cherries are bright red, the Castillo when the cherries are purple, and the Colombia when the color is dark yellow.
The coffee is kept in a hopper for 12 hours, depulped the morning after it’s picked, using a traditional depulper, and fermented for 24 hours in a tank. It’s washed three or four times before being dried on raised beds that are housed in a drying structure with a gable roof for 14 days.