2016 has been an unusually tough year for most coffee farmers in most parts of Colombia because of El Niño – a complex weather pattern resulting from variations in ocean temperatures, that can lead to extreme weather conditions. Because of drought this year harvests have either been delayed, very small, or in some cases even non-existing. A severe lack of rain in many coffee growing regions has affected the quality of the coffee in a negative way, and thus there has been an increase in the number of hollow beans, leaf rust, and broca (coffee berry borer).
This year’s production volumes in Rwanda have returned to a more normal level after last year’s huge harvest. As a whole the production volume appears to be average, though some rule changes in how cherries are delivered has caused some regions to drop in volume more than others. Overall we have less coffee available than last year but the quality of the coffees is generally improved.
We are at the time of year when many roasters are thinking: what’s next? We’re talking about fresh greens, of course. We’ll try to give you an overview of our current and upcoming purchasing so you can plan the next 6 months or more. There are lots of fresh crop goodies on the way from Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania, Colombia and Brazil. And if all goes well we’ll launch a new origin, Indonesia.
Israel Degfa is a young business man in Ethiopia with a sure and steady focus. He owns thirteen washing stations and a farm, across the South and South West of Ethiopia. In previous years the production at these washing stations has been focused on volume but over the last two or so years Israel has shifted his focus, and is now working on the quality of processing across his washing stations as priority.
We are introducing a selection of coffees for the first time, through a new project were we are working with a single farm. The farm is able to produce lot separation according to different parts of the farm and by varietal, with complete traceability. This is the first opportunity these coffees are being exposed to the market in this way. We have been working with Mohammed Lalo over the four or so months I travelled to and from, as well as around Ethiopia. The anticipation of the final results from our investment and the investment from our new partner has been mounting.
The most fascinating thing with costa Rica is the awareness of lot separation and different processing and preparation methods. You’ll find great representative coffees of everything from fully washed, different levels of honeys as well as super clean naturals. Even if the coffees can be expensive due to cost of production we totally find it worth it.
We both want to maintain transparency in what we do and communicate why we chose any one of the coffees we sell over the many others we cup through. So we have looked at the kind of profiles we work with from Ethiopia, we have associated these flavor profiles to colors that make sense to us and we have created a color wheel of Ethiopian coffee profiles.
Working in coffee in any producing country is like working in a shifting landscape, and for me no landscape shifts quite so much as Ethiopia. Still a magnificent landscape all the same.This 2015/2016 season has been really exciting for us because of developments in our own business which have lent us far greater scope to explore and uncover the coffees of Ethiopia.
2015 was as a great year for us at Nordic thanks to all of you that’s supporting us as producers, exporters and clients. We know that many of you have great sales before Christmas and we would like to give you an update on fresh available and incoming coffees, as well as some good offers. Hopefully this will help you plan the purchase for the next months.