Costa Rica washed Arabica SHB EP La Pastora Tarrazu
Costa Rica boasts eight coffee growing regions, the most famous of which is Tarrazú. Bounded by the Pacific Ocean in the west and the mountain range of the Cordillera Central in the east, it is a region of lush vegetation and breathtaking views. Above all, Tarrazú is an ideal location to grow Arabica coffee. High altitudes and a sedimentary soil composition favor the smooth and fine acidity these coffees are famous for, while the nearby Pirrís river supplies the region with fresh water.
Long-established within this region, the cooperative CoopeTarrazú was founded in 1960. Before its foundation, there were no wet mills nearby where farmers could bring their coffee to, so coffee was mostly sold to middlemen. Farmers also had only little knowledge about coffee production, resulting in low yields from their hard work. Today, CoopeTarrazú is the biggest cooperative in the region with more than 5,000 members who deliver their coffee cherries to the communal wet mill. Part of their strategy is to increase productivity through various training programs and engineering farm visits. In addition to high-quality coffee production, the members are committed to the social development of the local communities as well as environmental protection through eco-friendly practices. Among their initiatives range recycling programs, the use of renewable energy and reduction of water consumption.
Thanks to its favorable soil and climate conditions, the region is famous for producing some of the best coffees in the world. The high altitudes and thus low temperatures during the night let the cherries mature more slowly, resulting in a dense bean which qualifies the coffee as Strictly Hard Bean (SHB). Coffees from Tarrazú have already won multiple international barista and cupping competitions.
Out of the tropical countries, Costa Rica is probably the most environmentally conscious one. More than 25% of the country's land is protected in national parks, while 5% of the global biodiversity can be found in this rather small country. Next to this impressive progress in conserving nature, Costa Rica has also established a reputation for stable economic growth. Costa Ricans call themselves "ticos" and strongly believe in the absence of a national military. No surprise, this progressive nation is said to be one of the happiest people on earth according to the Happy Planet Index. We believe this thoughtfulness can also be found in each cup of coffee from this Central American beauty.
The first coffee production in Costa Rica dates back to the late 18th century. The government created major incentives to cultivate coffee by giving farmed land to the growers for free after five years of coffee cultivation. It turned coffee into the most important export good and was a substantial part of the country's economic rise.
However, until the mid-1990s, coffee production also put its shadows on Costa Rica: water used for fermenting the beans left the washing stations without filtering while deforestation had reached a critical level. It was in 1995 when the government stepped in once again and caused a radical change by creating strict environmental laws in coffee production.
Nowadays, Costa Rica has a reputation for having some of the highest production and quality standards. This not only includes high quality standards with respect to coffee cups but also to social welfare and environmental-friendly processing technologies in production. Costa Rican coffees tend to have a medium body, are well-balanced surprise with a fresh and sweet acidity.
|COFFEE REGIONS||Central Valley, West Valley, Tarrazú|
|COFFEE ALTITUDES||700 – 1,900 masl.|
|VARIETIES||Bourbon, Jackson, Mibrizi and some SL varieties|
|HARVEST PERIOD||Oct – Mar|
|COFFEE FARMS||Smallholders and plantations|
|AVERAGE FARM SIZE||0.5 – 5.5 ha|
|YEARLY PRODUCTION (IN 60KG BAGS)||1,472,000|