Farm: Villa Hermosa
Varietal: Red & Yellow Colombia
Processing: 36 hours fermentation & dried on parabolic beds
Altitude: 1,750 metres above sea level
Owner: Flor Penna
Town / City: Pedregal
Flor Penna - Colombia
This micro-lot was produced and processed by Flor Penna, a smallholder producer located in Inzá, Cauca. Produced at 1,700 meters above sea level, this very special lot was selected out from the rest of the organization’s producers as being of exceptional quality.
The municipality of Inzá is located in the corner of the Department of Cauca, bordering with Tolima and Huila and looking out to the west over the Pacific Ocean. Situated on the “Macizo Colombiano” (the Colombian Plateau), which surrounds the high peaks of Tolima and Huila, the region is an important source of water and wildlife, in addition to being prime coffee growing land.
Doña Flor is well known throughout the town of Pedregal, due to her strong independent nature. Although she lives with her mother and two brothers, Flor manages all agricultural activities on the farm by herself, doing much of the manual work and only occasionally hiring neighbours for jobs that require an extra pair of hands; like harvesting. As well as paying close attention to her crop, Flor also has a keen interest in bamboo, producing much of the furniture found in and around the farm.
In recent years, our export partner, Pergamino, has launched a new project with the Pillimue family, specifically in the region of Cauca. To offer upmarket access more widely in the region and to put more control in the hands of local people, the family (who has long supplied coffee to Pergamino from their various family member farms) has opened a small warehouse and cupping lab with funding from Pergamino. They act as logistics and sourcing partners and can provide quality assessment services for nearly 150 families in the area, which is far more impactful than any other regional association, reaching not just San Antonio, but now also the towns of Belen, La Palmera, Aguablanca, Pedregal, Palmichal, San Jose and Santa Teresa. Most importantly, the Pillimue/Pergamino partnership enables more families than ever before to access higher prices by placing coffee on the specialty market.
Today, Pergamino works with more than 600 smallholder farmers in four Departments (Cauca, Antioquia, Huila and Nariño), and their influence continues to grow. They have developed relationships with the communities over time, providing invaluable feedback on quality and training in quality assessment. They are committed to transparency in their partnerships with these farmers, ensuring that profit margins are clear and that value-added by quality goes directly to the producer. The premiums that Pergamino pays (and that Mercanta pays) range from 30-300% over market prices (depending on cupping score and volume). They also provide technical assistance so that farmers can continue to improve crop quality.
During the harvest season, Pergamino has committed to monthly visits to the group to cup and advice on quality. All coffee produced by the group that cups at 84+ points will be purchased. 84 scoring coffees will be added to the municipality (Inza) lot, 85 scoring to the sub-municipality (San Antonio) lot and higher scoring lots (such as this one) may be held aside as micro-lots to be marketed under the farmer/family’s name.