Our Coffee Origins
COLUMBIA | Cesar : Asoprokia
Our Fair Trade, Organic Colombian beans come from
the Farmers of the Asociacion de Productores Agro
Ecologicos de la Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta,
abbreviated Asoprokia. The Co-op is located in the
Cesar Department of northern Colombia; this department
is situated between the Sierra Nevada de Santa
Marta region, the Serrania del Perija mountain range,
the valleys of the Cesar and Magdalena Rivers, and the
Cienaga de Zapatosa marsh in the Caribbean region.
The Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta region is a coastal
mountain range that runs through Colombia along the
Caribbean Sea. The Sierra Nevada’s peaks reach an
altitude of 18,700 feet, and the range consists of diverse
ecoregions that vary with elevation. A dry scrub region
lies at low elevation near the coastline, the Sinu Valley
dry forests cover the lower slopes, and the Santa Marta
Paramo grassland belt between 10,800 feet and 16,000
feet is located below the high elevation permanent
In 2008, the Asoprokia Co-op was established to united dedicated local coffee producers in the Cesar Department. The Co-op developed a strategic marketing plan that has consolidated and strengthened the region’s coffee industry, resulting in new economic opportunities. The moderate elevation of the Sierra Nevada region, combined with fertile soil and excellent natural irrigation, allow for a long growing season and produce excelso (medium-large) beans. The farmers of Asoprokia take great pride in hand-picking their coffee fruit at ideal harvesting times. The Co-op also practices traditional sun-drying, known as dry-processing, to enhance the natural richness of the beans. In this region, coffee farming is both a lifestyle and a masterful artform. The caliber of the Co-op’s coffee beans is the best reflection of the high standards of coffee farming in Colombian Sierra Nevada region.
GUATEMALA | Huehuetenango : ASDECAFE
The Huehuetenango municipality of western Guatemala
extends across the Sierra de los Cuchumatanes mountain
range, which is the highest non-volcanic mountain range
in Central America. The Huehuetenango coffee growing
region, internationally renowned as one of the most
prominent coffee-producing areas in the world, is concentrated
at high altitudes – between 4,260 feet and
5,640 feet above sea level.
Our Fair Trade, Organic Guatemalan beans come from the ASDECAFE producer association in Huehuetenango. ASDECAFE is a Spanish acronym for the Sustainable Coffee Association of Guatemala.
The association, founded in 2013, is currently comprised of 9 coffee producer organizations in the Huehuetenango region, and is looking to expand to the El Quiche region. All members work on small, privately owned coffee farms. ASDECAFE is committed to reducing the environmental footprint left by the farming and processing of specialty coffee in Guatemala, and uses only environmentally sustainable practices. Members employ the wet-processing method. First, the coffee fruit is hand-picked, sorted, and cleaned. The pulp is then removed from the cherry before drying – a distinct difference from the dry-processing method. If the pulp does not peel off easily from the bean during this step, the fruit is not completely ripe and is filtered out. After washing, the remaining beans are referred to as “parchment”; this describes the final layer that still covers the green beans. The parchment layer is removed using a miller, and the beans are prepared for roasting.
ASDECAFE farms adhere to these rigorous procedures to produce specialty SHB beans. SHB refers to “strictly hard beans”, and is applied to coffee beans that are grown at high altitudes. High-altitude beans are hard and dense due to a slow maturation process, and as a result their flavor becomes more concentrated, consistent, and vibrant. ASDECAFE beans are characteristic of the excellence of Huehuetenango coffee farming, and the association works diligently to ensure equality for all farmers while embracing sustainability.