It is important to us to know exactly where our green coffee beans come from and that they are ethically and sustainably sourced. That is why we go direct. Why is it important? Direct trade essentially cuts out the middleman.
Farmers meet and interact with distributors directly. In exchange for better prices for their goods, the producers strive to provide higher quality products for their buyers. Direct trade distributors then buy straight from the farmers.
This practice allows us to directly influence both the quality of the goods we receive and the prices that farmers are able to receive. Overall, this increases sustainability on both sides of the equation.
Being able to give back and help our industry grow from strength to strength whilst providing an amazing product is what it’s all about. Our latest trip was to Takengon, Aceh province, Sumatra – Indonesia at the end of March/ April 2019 (End of coffee harvest and peak export season).
We arrived into Takengon, a small mountainous town in Aceh overlooking lake Laut Tawar. Setting this as our base, we set out on the road and visited 12-18 villages in the surrounding districts of Aceh Tengah and Bener Meriah, meeting producing families and coffee collectors. These communities are almost solely reliant on coffee for their income – be it cultivating, collecting, curing or milling. We particularly sought out producers who are C.A.F.E (Coffee and Farmer Equity) Practises certified as we felt their values were in line with our own.
The mills workforce comprises mostly of the women living in the local area who take great pride in their work of hand-sorting the coffees. For their hard work and dedicated efforts to maintain sustainable coffee practises we felt it only fitting to give them a premium for these coffees and to reinforce the importance of quality in the production and processing of coffee. Peaking our excitement along the way were a handful of roastery’s with probats and custom-built roasters producing interesting micro lots and specialties for local coffee connoisseurs.
With this trip we bought back an amazing single origin that is in some of our blends.
Indonesia Aceh Gayo, grade 1, triple picked.
Dark plum, blackcurrant, lemon and apple notes with tart acidity and a rounded body that increases as it cools and finishes with sweet mixed berries.
- Altitude: 1500-1800 masl
- Varietal: SL 795 & Typica
- Process: Cherry Fermented, Wet Hulled
OTHER DETAILS OF THE COFFEE:
- Parchment with 35%- 40% moisture is consolidated from co-operatives Aceh Tengah and Bener Meriah districts. There are approx. 1600 members from about 28 villages that make up this program.
- In the warehouse, this parchment is dried, wet hulled (Giling Basah) and dried again to reach its final stage of ungraded green coffees (Asalan) with approx 14% -16% moisture.
- This Asalan is later subjected to final processing, sorting and grading.
- The coffees are dry hulled if required.
- Screen sorted and separation is also done with one colour sorter in site. Women hand sort the green beans (for triple picked grade) to reduce total number of defects.
- QA on lots is undertaken by the team at the in-house lab at the export facility.