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October 13, 2020 / By: Karibu / Teme: Costa Rica, arabica, coffee farm

Coffee is always a perfect gift - especially when you hear the story of this Costa Rican farm

This month, we welcomed in Trešnjevka freshly roasted coffee from Awaken Coffee Roastery, Hungary. With their coffee we’ve already met this winter. Since coffee was delicious, we decided to have it again in our offer.

We'll talk shortly about coffee originating from Aquiares, one of Costa Rica’s largest and most historic coffee farms, sits high on the fertile slopes of Turrialba Volcano. Producing coffee continuously for over a century, the farm has developed an enduring model for growing high-quality Arabica coffee, protecting a stunning natural setting, and supporting a thriving local community of 1,800 people. Established by British farmers in 1890, Aquiares was one of the first estates to produce and export Costa Rican coffee. In 1971, the farm was purchased by its current owners - three families who have worked together with the farm ́s staff and community to implement a modern model of sustainable agriculture. Today, the Estate is the largest continuous coffee farm in Costa Rica, covering 924 hectares, 80% of which is planted under shade-grown Arabica.

Don Alfonso took over farm management in 1992, and at the time he was new(ish) to coffee. From the beginning, Don Alfonso made the social welfare of farm workers and the wider community one of his main priorities. His dedication has transformed the farm and the region.

The farm manages the entire coffee production chain, from seedling production to plant cultivation, harvesting and milling. This ensures that they are able to meet the highest standards of quality assurance and can guarantee a traceable product. Caturra is the main varietal grown on the farm, but climate change and pests require constant experimentation with new varieties that can adapt better to future conditions. Diego Robelo, who has developed this quality-focused line, has led much of the new ‘charge’ towards new variety experimentation. Throughout the season, workers from the community care for the trees: pruning, fertilizing, weeding, and protecting them.

This lot is 100% ‘Centroamericano’ variety – a hybrid of Rume Sudan and Sarchimor, developed by a variety of different Central American coffee research institutes, that marries high cup quality with high resistance to disease.

All Aquiares coffee is picked by hand to ensure consistent high quality. Microlots, such as this one, are picked by a special team of skilled harvesters who are paid well above the daily rate for their exceptional skill in picking the ripest cherries at each pass. Each tree is visited up to seven times during the harvest to ensure that only fully red ripe cherries are picked. The skilled hands of the pickers represent the farm’s most valuable asset. Pickers hail from the community of Aquiares, nearby towns, and even from the neighbouring country of Nicaragua. The farm ensures that all workers have a safe work environment and a comfortable place to live. Workers coming from further away can live in on-site housing and use a children’s day-care. The farm sponsors doctors’ visits for pickers and their families twice a week where nutritional health advice is also given. From the very beginning, high working conditions are one of the priorities of this farm.

After this story you can only go to our web shop and order coffee for yourself or some coffee lover. Surprise your friend, boyfriend / girlfriend or parents for a birthday, anniversary or other special occasion. Coffee is always a good solution. If you are looking for a gift to a passionate coffee lover, take a look at our coffee subscription concepts on our website.

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