Tag Archives: quality

98. Where does quality come from?

A Q-grader cupper recently offered me his perspective on where quality comes from. Later that day, I had dinner with another Q-grader cupper and asked her the same question. Their answers were identical, but neither included ANYTHING that happens between the selection of the varietal and harvest – the space in which where farmers spend most of their time and energy.

96. A trip to market

An important part of our approach to agro-enterprise involves making the chain that links farmers to markets more transparent.  The idea is that the more farmers understand the market end of the chain — consumer preferences, market trends, quality standards, product presentation, etc. — the more effectively they can meet the demands of the market.  […]

94. Nariño’s coronation

The Colombia Cup of Excellence competition held earlier this month may have marked the coronation of Nariño as the source of the country’s finest coffee. Farmers from Nariño claimed the first six spots and eight of the top ten. Such dominance leaves little doubt that the center of Colombian coffee has shifted definitively to Nariño.

82. Quality premiums at origin

I have posted references here to some of the great coffee-drinking experiences I have had in the coffeelands over the past year. Beyond their travelogue value, those posts point to an underlying market trend that may make tight markets for quality coffee even tighter — the growing number of quality-focused coffeeshops in producing countries paying premiums for exceptional coffees.

56. 2d place in Nicaragua COE goes to CRS-supported farmer

Jaime Molina — a member of the 5 de junio cooperative that participates in the CRS CAFE Livelihoods project — took 2d place in last month’s Nicaragua Cup of Excellence competition. We can’t take credit for Jaime’s coffee, but we sure will work to figure out what exactly he is doing right and try to share it with other farmers in the project. Congratulations, Jaime, and good luck at auction!

49. More perspectives on Direct Trade

The Fair Trade v. Direct Trade debate — to the extent that people are still having it — is fueled by caricatures of each approach that may reflect some grain of truth but ultimately misrepresent the realities of both.