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29 July

Coffee Origins - Guatemala Sierra Madre

Region: Union Cantinil, Huehuetenango

Altitude: 1700

Process: Washed

Varietal: Catuai, Bourbon, Caturra

Notes: Maple, grape, chocolate, dried fruit, nuts


Used in: Juggernaut blend

Due to its remoteness, most producers in Huehuetenango process their own coffee. Luckily, an abundance of streams and rivers in the region makes fully washed processing more accessible. Farmers selectively hand pick cherry and pulp it on their farms, usually with small hand-powered or electric drum pulpers. Cherry is dry fermented for 24 to 72 hours. The high altitude means cooler weather, which often extends fermentation time. 


After fermenting, parchment is agitated to remove remaining mucilage and washed with clean water. All water used during pulping and washing will be filtered – usually through earthen holes – so that the organic solids do not contaminate local waterways. Farmers typically lay parchment to dry on raised beds that are stacked on top of each other to maximize space. Patios are also frequently used. 


By buying coffee from smallholders farmers in the Union Cantinil municipality in Sierra Madre we are supporting the work of Coffee Care who operate a not-for-profit in the region. Their projects focus on addressing necessities and concerns that farmers and the community identify in their daily lives. Some of the projects already underway include environmental awareness education for children, entrepreneurship programs for women, alternative income sources such as a community bakery, building infrastructure including 5 schools and a health clinic, and nutritional programs.