Skip to comments.Organic coffee: Why Latin America's farmers are abandoning it [lib suicide watch ]
Posted on 03/07/2010 7:16:48 PM PST by Moe Tzadik
GUATEMALA CITY Some 450,000 pounds of organic coffee sit in a warehouse here, stacked neatly in 132-pound bags. It's some of the world's best coffee, but Gerardo De Leon can't sell it.
"This is very high quality and it's organic. But ... the roasters don't want to pay extra these days," says the manager of FEDECOCAGUA, Guatemala's largest growers' cooperative, which represents 20,000 farmers.
De Leon is asking $2 per pound for the unroasted coffee, about 50 cents more than the going price. But he says he'll soon have to sell it as conventionally grown coffee, which sells for less.
That's why many Mesoamerican farmers here are starting to give up on organic coffee: The premium price that it used to fetch is disappearing.
(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.nwsource.com ...
Maybe the caffeine isn’t roasted out, but I can’t stand the burned flavor at Starbucks, even if you can bring your guns. Remember that the French roasted cork to produce ersatz coffee in WWII; when your roast is THAT dark, you’re basically percolating charcoal briquettes...
I heard that some people roast their own beans at home. Maybe that would solve everybody’s problem, from Mrs. Olsen to poor Organic Juan Valdez down there.
P.S. Folgers will do, but I like Farmer Brothers...
I imagine it isn’t all roasted out, but there is less caffeine in dark roasted beans than lighter roast.
I love Starbucks, and any other coffee shop that can give me something close to the coffee I remember in Europe, especially France.
I wouldn’t go so far as to try to roast my own beans; my oven probably doesn’t have the fine temperature control needed. But I buy the darkest roasts I can, with beans so dark they look like dark chocolate.
I can’t tolerate most coffee that comes in cans.
“Ill stick with my Folgers.”
I’ll stick with my YUletide BANquet.
It’s cheap and gets the job done.
I like Costco’s Seattle Mountain Roast Columbia Supremo.
I use a popcorn maker to roast coffee. It usually turns out quite good but its too smoky to roast inside and doesn’t work in cold weather.
Ah, so you have happy memories of le cafe de la belle france... That explains a lot!
Actually, I was thinking of a counter-top device that I’m sure I’ve seen advertised - “perfect roast every time” or some such, enough for a cup at a time, or maybe a pot. But since you like Starbucks, you can always find your blend.
My problem is that I’m in the same boat as the libs on whom so many posters are dumping their Folgers: I like the expensive stuff, but hate paying for it!
132 lb. bags
Guatemalan coffee is NOT bagged in 132 lb. bags.
It is measured by the POUND, not the Kilo. Period. Dot.
150 lb. bags, 250 of which make one trading unit = 37,500 lbs., which is about as much as can be loaded into a truck without exceeding 80,000 lb gross vehicle weight limits...
Other localities bag their green coffee differently. Colombia bags in 70 Kilo increments (154-155+ lb.s depending upon the leakage through the weave, by the time it leaves a U.S. shipper's dock).
Most Asian coffees are bagged in 60 Kilo (132+lb.) bags.
Sumatra, Java, New Guinea, Sulawesi, Flores, etc., all bag in 60 Kilo, along with every African coffee I've dealt with.
Hmmm, I'm thinking Colombia is the only with 70 Kilo. Even Panama (if memory serves) bags in 150 lb. Mexico, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, & Brazil , all bag 150 lb. NOT "Kilos".
Obviously, the news writer doesn't know beans.
The real "high grown" coffee from whichever nation, doesn't even much need the 'organic' labeling.
If it is truly high grown, the pests typical to coffees in lower elevations are generally not present, hence the lack of pesticide use for those locales.
In the high altitudes, non-organic fertilizers are pretty much unheard of, too.
The 'organic' labeling for such coffees is superfluous, not to mention expensive to get, and at least used to have such stipulations that the ripe cherry couldn't be gathered into 5 gallon plastic buckets, but had to be put into baskets made of 'native orgainic materials', preferably woven indigenously...
Which has nothing to do with being "organic" unless one is a Medea Benjamin, Global Exchange sycophant.
Ever smell a Korean kimchee field? In the hot sun? Only shade the shadow of the cloud...of flies?
I only want U.S.A. raised 'regular' produce, and only buy what I can't grow.
At least we have COR labeling now, so we can make a real choice.
$1.50 -$2/pound for raw beans?
For the difference in prices at the store for roasted beans, I could use one of those 132# bags, and do my own roasting...
What did he say his phone number was?
Community Coffee here in La. Folgers??
I just launched a mouth full of store brand coffee at my screen... Thanks for the chuckle...
I am a little more serious about my beer...
When i was in college back in the late 70s, i did an exchange program in Colombia. I have NEVER had coffee as good as what i had there. They supposedly export all of their best beans but even 100% colombian coffee beans, hand ground etc, here, NEVER taste as good as the coffee did there. We toured coffee plantations, coffee processing plants etc.
Organic coffee does taste better but.....This seems like a supply and demand problem. High demand from US and Euro greenie types resulted in huge acreage of organic coffee trees. Probably during the bubble years
Now there is an oversupply so if you make the extra effort to go& grow organic there is no reward
Liberals WANT to be made to behave (after all, they can’t control themselves), as well, they want the rest of us to be made to “behave” according to their mandates for the environment, etc. It’s working.
I will have to try an Ethiopian coffee the next time I order coffee. Taste is the primary reason I make my own at home. For around $11/lb, I have enough good quality coffee to last at least two weeks.
Greetings from North Texas.
I’m going to make a wild guess, you currently live near sea level, and were at altitude in Columbia.
(nully testing a theory)
First off, all grocery coffee is stale. Roasted coffee stales in about three to five days after roasting. There is a point between twelve hours and three days that the coffee is typically at it's peak flavor.
Second, many store-bought coffees are not all Arabica beans, which is the most flavorful type. Many grocery brands are cut with Robusta beans, which boosts caffeine and can be grown at lower altitudes and better harvested with machinery.
Organic or not, the best coffees can be found at small coffee farms, where attention to detail both in cultivation and cherry selection. Most of what I buy comes from a lefty group known as Sweet Marias (www.sweetmarias.com). I don't question their politics - I just enjoy some of the best coffees the world has to offer. You would be very surprised at the variety of tastes and flavors you can find between different origins and farms.
This is my roaster:
It's a nice hobby, and the best thing is - like beer brewing - you have something very good that not many store brands can duplicate.