Below is the second installment from our boss as he treks thru Panama, visiting our farms and experiencing firsthand the amazing effort of a so many people to bring coffee to your cup.
Yesterday was a long day, but full of interesting insights into the world of coffee. From watching the freshly-picked cherries be dropped off at the mill bag by bag, to the whole process of multiple washings and extraction of the coffee beans from the cherries. You very quickly realize how much work goes into a single cup of coffee.
I got to see a more traditional mill which just underscored how advanced the methods and techniques of our new mill really are.
I had a chance to sit down with one of the premier families in Panama coffee farming, and enjoy an espresso and warm friendly discussion. Seeing the generations of farmers here, and sharing time with them makes me realize how coffee IS their culture. It's in their blood.
I met a new farmer who left the American world of finance to start his own coffee farm here in Panama. He planted his fields almost five years ago, and after all that work, he will finally find out this year if his harvest will be any good. Can you imagine investing time, money, and energy in a crop that "should" produce quality product?
These are not rare stories. They abound here, from families that have grown their coffee the same way for generations to new farmers just learning. Even coffee roasters who are so invested in the quality of the product AND the quality of the lives of people, have their son spend much of his time here (yes I am referring to Pete Rogers).
For the farmers, coffee is so much more than just a great beverage. It is a way of life and a promise to millions of people. I am beginning to understand.
If you didn't get a chance to read his first diary post, go here and EXPERIENCE PANAMA DAY 1