YOUR WASHED COFFEE: FROM SEED TO DRYING
Your washed coffee starts out as seedlings, which take 3-4 years to become coffee-producing trees.
Beans grow inside cherry-like fruit. After four years of growing to maturity, each tree can produce 1-1.5 pounds of coffee per year, depending on the resources a farmer can dedicate to her coffee. Harvests are just once a year.
For maximum sweetness and development, only the reddest coffee cherries should be picked, leaving green ones for another day.
Picked coffee cherries are placed in a big cement funnel. We fill the funnel with water to remove imperfections, which float and are scooped off. Then good coffee fruit falls down an opening in the funnel to a "depulper" machine.
The "depulper" separates the outside fruit from beans inside. They are squeezed through a narrow passage wider than a bean but smaller than the fruit.
Next, a naturally-occurring honey-like layer outside each bean is fermented with no additives. Fermentation makes the honey layer viscous in water so it can be washed off after 12-48 hours.
After fermentation, the honey-like layer is removed with water. Imperfections float away over this dam we built, while denser, quality coffee sinks to the bottom. We filter run-off water to care for the environment.
At the dry mill the coffee is either dried on raised drying beds with a wooden frame and wire mesh underneath, or...
Larger lots can be dried on a cement patio.
Traceability of every lot is maintained, from farms of partner producers to what we export to roasters like you. We mark every single bag with the variety, producer's name, and lot number.
After drying, coffee is stored in a warehouse for a minimum of one month so moisture levels in each bean distribute evenly (without this step, coffee tastes grassy or chalky). Next comes dry hulling.