London Coffee Festival - In Pictures
Thank you very much to everyone who came to say hello, listened to our presentations, and cupped coffees with us this year at the London Coffee Festival. Our cuppings focussed on two areas of Raw Material's projects; the Red Associations in Colombia, and our recent processing experiments in Rwanda.
At Villa Maria, a Red Association hub in Caldas, new experimentation trials have taken place. The result of which were two small lots of coffees that were presented at the festival, Villa Maria Honey, and the Villa Maria Natural. The responses for both of these experimentations were very positive at the festival, and as such we are beginning to look into producing larger volumes.
Experiments in Processing: Same Coffee Three Ways
In February, Miguel and Richard travelled to Rwanda, to explore processing experiments with our producer partners Muraho Trading Co at the Kilimbi coffee washing station. The experiments focussed on the honey and natural process for flavour development, two processes which are still relatively unexplored due to restrictions on their production in the country until recently.
The naturally processed coffees were laid on drying beds for 40 days. With regards to the honeys, firstly the cherry was washed, and stored in plastic bags for 24 hours, before being pulped late the next afternoon. The pulped coffees were kept in a pre-drying shed overnight, before being moved to drying tables at different times the following day. The honeys were explored with regards to development, and the experiment returned coffees between which sat between red and black honey grades. These separations of the same lot were put out to dry at three different stages throughout the day, 7am, 1pm, and 4pm.
On the Thursday, we held our first presentation of the event, "Specialty Coffee As A Solution; Using demand for high quality coffee as a tool for sustainable growth". This presentation highlighted the rationale behind payment structure of the Red Associations and El Fénix wet mill, and how by reexamining the value chain, the potential returns for producers in the country can be vastly improved. Saturday we held an additional talk, "From the farm to your cup: How your coffee is made", which explained the various transformations that coffee undergoes throughout its passage to the consumer.
Thanks again to everyone who revelled in the festival with us, until next time!