The farmers behind this coffee are a carefully selected group of small producers who understand strict quality standards and are fully committed to producing and delivering their best coffees. Typically the producers farm land of around 1 to 5 hectares.
Expect flavours of dried fruit and chocolate in the cup with a delicious, lingering caramel tone in the finish.
This coffee has been decaffeinated using the carbon dioxide method (see below).
Huila is quite well-known for its ideal coffee growing environments, not only thanks to the soil and climate, but also due to the hard-working producers within the region. Coffee farming in Huila is overwhelmingly small-scale. Indeed, approximately 80% of producers from the region grow coffee on less than 3 hectares of land. These small farms are tended by individual families with labour only rarely being contracted out, which leads to more thorough and intensive management practices and great pride in the final product – which is, itself, an extension of the family.
Harvesting & Processing
After the red and ripe cherries are picked, they are usually floated in plastic tanks to remove any underweight cherries. They are then pulped by passing them through a manual pulper at the family farm (usually located close to the main house). The waste from this process will be used later as a natural fertilizer for the coffee trees. Coffee is then fermented anywhere from 12 to 18 hours, depending on the weather, and then washed using cold, clean water.
Once this process is complete, many of the farmers sun dry their parchment on patios or on the roofs of their houses (elbas). Farmers in this part of Huila have designed a mechanism by which they can slide the roof with pulleys to cover the coffee in case of rain. Some farmers dry their coffee on parabolic beds under the sun. These parabolic beds, known locally as marquesinas – which are constructed a bit like ‘hoop house’ greenhouses, with airflow ensured through openings in both ends – both protect the parchment from rain and mist as it is dried and prevent condensation from dripping back on the drying beans.
The Decaf Process
This coffee has been decaffeinated using the carbon dioxide method. Beans are soaked in hot water and are placed with carbon dioxide in a vessel where large amounts of pressure are applied. The carbon dioxide enters a super-critical state where it is partly a liquid and partly a gas. The carbon dioxide then attaches to the caffeine and the beans can be removed and dried. When the vessel is depressurised the carbon dioxide returns to a gas and releases the caffeine into the water. The carbon dioxide is reused and the caffeine is recovered from the water to be sold on.