Why is Colombia Ideal for Growing Coffee?
Location and Climate
Colombia’s biodiversity creates a broad palette of flavors and aromas which allow for premium pricing. Furthermore, thanks to free trade agreements and its favorable geographical location, Colombia serves well as an export hub, reaching more than 1.5 billion consumers.
One of the qualities that make Colombia perfect for coffee production is its mountainous surface. The Andes mountains cut through the country in three parallel mountain ranges. These mountains create an ideal environment for growing coffee. Colombia is also entirely within the “Coffee Belt” (the area of the world where coffee can grow).
Coffee grows best in volcanic soil, at altitudes of 1200 to 1800 meters, in places that are free of frost but receive around 80 inches of rain per year. Colombia checks all those boxes. Due to its geographical location and favorable climate, Colombia is one of the most well-suited growing regions in the world and is able to produce year round.
Building on centuries of experience, Colombia has developed sustainable growing methods. The way coffee is harvested in Colombia is key to its superior quality. While some countries favor strip picking (taking all the beans off the branches, ripe as well as unripe cherries), Colombia uses the “cherry pick” method, ensuring only the fully ripe cherries are selected. Coffee pickers examine trees every 10 days and the best pickers can harvest up to 90 kilos of ripe red cherries a day.
In Colombia, each and every bean is picked by hand. Each one of the nearly 600.000 coffee producers in the country picks their whole harvest manually. And the reason is simple: only humans can tell the difference between the unripe, overripe, and green coffee beans.
100% Arabica Beans
There are two main types of coffee beans: Arabica and Robusta. Colombian coffee is made with the superior Arabica variety while many other coffee-producing countries grow the inferior Robusta. Colombia is one of the only countries that produces 100% Arabica beans. When coffee is 100% Arabica, price goes up as a direct correlation to quality.