Artisanal Coffee from Around the World
If you are anything like us at Producers Market, you get excited about your morning coffee even before falling asleep at night. (That’s normal, right?!)
And surely you know the coffee basics. Light and dark roast. Espresso, cappuccino, Americano. Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Brazil. Antioxidants—good for you. Caffeine–the good and the bad.
But did you know that Finland, where no coffee is grown at all, is the country that consumes the most? Or that, globally, people consume about 2.25 billion cups of coffee every day?
Before we introduce you to some of our rockstar coffee producers, let us give you a bit of history and some fun facts.
Coffee History & Facts
Historical narrative connects the discovery of coffee to a 15th century monastery in the Ethiopian highlands. After its introduction, people across the Arabian Peninsula cultivated and traded coffee. To this day, it reigns as one of the most popular beverages in the world. There are billions of coffee drinkers worldwide.
The black brew is made from ripe berries. Harvesters pick the berries from the coffee plant, and then they dry and process them. They are then roasted, ground and brewed into a tasty and aromatic morning (or afternoon, or evening) beverage.
Over the centuries, coffee has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry. It has become an integral part of many societies’ lifestyles, and even a cross-cultural phenomenon.
Optimal coffee growing conditions include cool-to-warm tropical climates, rich soils, and few pests or diseases. The world’s coffee belt spans the globe along the equator. People from North, Central and South America, the Caribbean, Africa, to the Middle East, and Asia grow and harvest coffee. Currently Brazil is leading the world’s coffee production.
Coffee is one of the most valuable tropical export crops on Earth, growing on more than 27 million acres. Small-scale coffee producers make about 70% of the world’s coffee. Additionally, as many as 120 million people depend directly or indirectly on coffee production for their economic survival.
There are two main categories of coffee: Robusta and Arabica.
Robusta coffee has a more acidic and harsh flavor with a higher level of caffeine.
Arabica coffee is known for its delicate flavor and lower acidity.
Both kinds are roasted before being ground and heated with water to make a cup of coffee. Contrary to the popular belief, dark roast and light roast coffee actually have a similar amount of caffeine. While the roasting process may change the flavor, it does not necessarily affect the caffeine content.
Did You Know?
Here are some additional coffee facts for your next trivia night:
- It is estimated that roughly 80 to 100 cups of coffee would be a lethal dose for an average adult.
- Average U.S. Americans spend $1,100 on coffee each year. But they still don’t consume as much as Finland.
- Brazil is now the largest producer of coffee, contributing 40% of the world’s coffee.
- Scientists have successfully turned ground coffee into biodiesel, so one day coffee may be fueling your car.
- Regularly drinking coffee may have health benefits such as reduced risk of illnesses like cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s.
- Just the smell of coffee can help you wake you up in the morning. (We knew it!)
- The word “coffee” comes from the Arabic qahwah, which refers to a type of wine. (Coffee and wine–just a couple of the finer things in life.)
Coffee Producers from Our Network
With so many artisanal coffee producers to choose from, where do we even begin? In our network we have some amazing options. We’ve chosen a few to highlight here, but we encourage you to take a look through our organization profiles to see them all.
Arthur Mcgowan, a Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee farmer, founded Trumpet Tree Coffee in 2014. Currently, the property grows 85 acres of rich Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee.
Around 4,000 feet above sea level, this artisanal coffee farm is nestled on the world-renowned Jamaica Blue Mountain. There they grow, process, roast, and package their highest-quality arabica beans with diligent care. Whether exported green or roasted, Trumpet Tree Coffee beans are of exceptional taste and quality.
These proud farmers want their customers to enjoy a taste of Jamaica and Riddim Blue with every sip.
This company is a world-class team of growers, processors, and logistics coordinators. They are proud of their red-picked Robusta coffee. Their product comes from some of the world’s most prime coffee-growing land. They use the highest quality post-harvest treatment systems to produce gold medal winning coffee. This is some of Indonesia’s finest artisanal coffee.
For a long time, coffee was one of Kenya’s top exports, providing livelihoods for millions of Kenyan farmers and rural communities. However, over the last two decades, the Kenyan coffee industry has declined. Due to many local and global factors, Kenya coffee farmers are now in an impoverished position.
Kenya Co-operative Coffee Exporters (KCCE) was founded on June 25th, 2009 with government support to address the various challenges that the coffee farmers were facing regarding the production, quality, marketing, and value addition of coffee.
Karl Wienhold was an experienced international trade consultant. When he connected with Frank Villeda, an experienced coffee trader in Colombia, they began a fruitful partnership. Karl had the vision of a direct trade network for producers and end consumers.Frank had a deep network of producers, but lacked access to markets.
Today, the Cedro Alto Collective works with farms and micro-lots all over Colombia. It currently supplies roasters throughout the U.S. and Australia.
It is Cedro Alto’s goal to make small-scale, artisanal coffee production sustainable by incentivizing environmental responsibility and fair compensation for farmers. They foster empathy and mutual understanding within the supply chain. Additionally, they intend to make coffee production a stimulating vocation for rural youth.
This cooperative began in 1984 with 20 small farmers who shared the belief that they could all benefit from working together. In 2010, these farmers transitioned to organic with only 25 hectares of land. They now have 1,200 hectares, managed by over 70 farmers. The cooperative emphasizes sustainable practices and organic methods. They prioritize the well-being of the communities and spaces they inhabit.
These are just a few of our rockstar artisanal coffee producers. Check out the rest on Producers Market and find the one whose mission is most aligned with your values.
Or, even better, try them all!