This organic coffee is a micro lot grown by Norma Iris Fiallos on her farm called Los Limos in Corquin Copan, Honduras. It is grown at 1300 metres above sea level and is of the Red Cataui coffee varietal. This coffee has been processed using the Yellow Honey process, were a certain amount of the sticky mucilage is left on the coffee bean after the skin and pulp of the cherry are removed, and then carefully dried.
At the end of 2016, our Importer Falcon Specialty, launched a project in the Copan region of Honduras, in collaboration with a small co-op – Aruco – where they supplied training, technical support and expertise. The project was focused on producing high quality microlots at a centralised mill, giving small producers access to specialty markets and quality price premiums. 25 small producers, with farms ranging in size between 1 and 5 hectares, were supported in the production of these microlots.
Key areas of improvement were in cherry selection and picking, processing and drying. Through the development of a microlot picking team shared by the 25 producers, they were able to increase the percentage of ripe cherries picked from 55% to 85%. Cherries were then delivered to a centralised mill, where they could control quality, processing and drying. A grading system was established at the mill, so lots could be rated and producers paid a different price for the quality of cherry selection. A cleaning team would then pass over the cherries, refining the selection to increase the final ripe cherry proportion to over 95% for all microlots. Falcon provided training for the technical staff at the mill on a range of processing methods, and taught them how to use the solar driers to control drying time and temperature in order to maintain quality and longevity. We created a set of documents to record data which can then be reviewed in relation to cup scores and longevity over a number of years, in order to better understand the effect of different variables on quality over time.
In addition, producers were provided with a number of different financial support packages, allowing them to cover the additional costs of picking only ripe cherries, and to manage their cash flow. This project resulted in an additional $60,840 being paid for the coffee (on top of the FTO market price at the time of purchase) in quality premiums to the 25 producers that took part in this project. The average cup score on all lots from these producers improved by an incredible 3.45 points (SCAA).