See for yourself where it all starts.
Click the image above to see an interview with our coffee farmer, Hamilton.
Our coffee is directly traded with a single estate family owned, farm in the specialty coffee growing region of Villa Rica, Peru. Our coffee is grown under the shade of native trees, preserving the natural eco-system and wildlife. The farm is dedicated to Bio Dynamic farming practices ensuring the sustainability of land, animals, and ethical treatment of the workers. There is a school and a medical clinic on the property for the workers and their families. Each year the same pickers return to the farm with their families.
Our coffee is picked by hand ensuring that only the ripened berries are selected. The un-ripened berries are left on the branches to be picked when they are ready. Each worker brings the berries they collected to station to be weighed.
Once the beans are weighed, they are placed into large vats where they are washed and de-pulped. During the process of de-pulping the fruit on the outside of the bean is removed and expelled out of the vat via a powered chute. The de-pulped beans are immersed in a water bath which serves to clean and to further separate and any lingering un-ripened fruit.
The beans are spread out to dry in the sun. If the weather is inclement the beans are placed into heated tumblers to be dried by warm air. Once dry the beans are placed into bags to rest for about one month of time. It is essential that the coffee rests for at least one month to produce a high quality specialty beans.
Hulling & Sorting
The beans are taken to an authentic cooperative owned and managed by several of the neighboring farms. In the mill the dry beans are sorted and hulled. Sorted by size and color the optimal beans are selected for ChocoSombra. A narrow range of bean size is necessary for excellence in roasting. A laser sorting machine sorts the beans by color. The hulling process involves removing the outer and inner layer of parchment surrounding the coffee bean.
Our coffee is packed in Grain Pro Bags, a hermetically sealed freshness liner, and shipped via boat from Peru to our warehouse in Frederick, MD.