History of Coffee from Colombia

Coffee is an intrinsic part of Colombian culture. This country has one of the oldest, biggest coffee industries in the whole world which has served to accelerate growth in the region as coffee demand grew over the years; growers in Colombia enjoy some of the best working conditions and salaries among coffee growers all over the world.

It’s more than word-of-mouth or an advertising ploy to sell more coffee; Colombian coffee is, indeed, some of the best out there. Even among Central American and South American countries, Colombian coffee is seen as superior.

About Colombian coffee:
Some of the most revered qualities of Colombian coffee is its versatility. Unlike countries that can usually specialize in either filtered coffee or espresso, Colombia has many different types of coffee— thanks to the fact that instead of big farms you have small, independent farms.

You can find coffee for filtering or for making espresso of the highest quality possible. Some of the flavor notes present in Colombian coffee beans are: buttery, nutty, yellow fruits and berries. Espresso blends are particularly bittersweet, often with cocoa and caramel hints.

Although most of the premium coffee is grown for exporting, plenty of top-notch coffee is left for local consumption. In fact, Colombia is one of the countries that consumes more of its local coffee than other growers such as Brazil, Kenya, or India. Culturally, coffee is seen as a key
ingredient for a regular life. It is normal to drink coffee from young ages such as 12 and for people to drink coffee even at dinner.

Colombia sells an astounding amount of coffee, most of which goes to Europe (as they drink more coffee than anyone), Japan, Australia, and the US. Mention Colombia and people expect good coffee.

So we have to ask… Why is it so good?

The answer is simple: The Andes.

The Andes Mountain Range

The Andes Mountains or The Andean Mountains are the longest mountain range in the world. They go from the very bottom of the continent in Chile and Argentina up to the very top, in Colombia; that’s over 4,000 miles long.

Elevations can reach up to 22,000 feet, making these mountains the tallest outside of Asia. And it’s precisely because of the altitude and the richness of the soil -mostly volcanic soil, as inactive volcanoes are common in the area- that the coffee cultivated in the surrounding area is of such good quality.

Colombia has an extra advantage: the perfect climate. Being in a tropical climate, the high altitude means that you get ideal temperatures for growing coffee (around 21 to 27 degrees celsius year-round) which is why, historically, coffee’s been such a profitable enterprise in the area. The region is also rich in rainforests and cloud forests.

Coffee Culture

Coffee is culture in more than one way. In Colombia, this is particularly true. The coffee industry is one of the biggest, oldest ones in the country. They have a very strong presence in the country and benefit not only from selling coffee itself, but also from tourism. Coffee estates offer guided visits and coffee tastings for foreigners. There’s also an entire theme park that is dedicated to coffee and is open year-round— right next to a coffee museum which showcases historic documents and tools used in the past by farmers. These are some of the attraction that can be found in the theme park:

  • A song and dance act that tells the history of coffee in the region.
  • Food stalls with traditional Colombian food.
  • Ecological coffee garden.
  • Interactive museum.
  • Horse rides.
  • Guided visits through the forest.
  • Bamboo forests.
  • Amusement park consisting of more than 20 different rides.

The traditional way of brewing coffee is through a cloth filter, very similar to a pour over method. The Moka pot is also a common sight in low to medium income households because it is cheaper and much more convenient. Otherwise, the espresso is king and Colombia is home to
worldwide coffee chains like Starbucks. Interestingly, Colombia also has its own coffee chain: Juan Valdez. Similarly to Starbucks, they offer coffee drinks, sell specialty coffee and have opened stores all over South and Central America. The name Juan Valdez is synonymous with
great coffee in the continent.

As you can see, Colombia and coffee go hand in hand. But don’t just take our word for it: try our coffee which is sourced from the best farms in Colombia and get to experience the bold, rich flavor of this country’s unique coffee.

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