19 March 2020 | company news | Views:

EXCLUSIVE to Pact Coffee: Cenicafé 1, a new variety

For most people, the only project that takes 20 YEARS to complete is raising a child. But the Colombian Coffee Growers’ Association (FNC) and its research-wing Cenicafé can also make that claim. And for them, it was 20 years well spent.

We’re very proud to announce we are the first worldwide to launch the new variety Cenicafé 1 for sale to customers. It’s exclusively available through Pact Coffee, it’s delicious, and it’s going to make the lives of farmers immeasurably better. We’re pretty chuffed.

What is a ‘coffee variety’?

‘New variety’ won’t mean a lot to you, unless you know what a coffee variety is. Here’s the basics: you’ve seen “100% arabica!” emblazoned on supermarket packaging, and maybe you’ve heard of robusta. Those are coffee species.

‘Variety’ is the next level of scientific classification. A bit like Granny Smith or Pink Lady apples, different varieties have different characteristics. From flavour notes and acidity levels, to resistances to diseases and what conditions they flourish under, there’s a whole load of coffee varieties in the world… and now one more.

Why was Cenicafé 1 developed?

Cenicafé 1 was a solution to a very serious problem. Climate change is wreaking havoc on the lives of coffee farmers - with rising temperatures and changing conditions causing diseases and pests to spread, and crops struggling to grow in new climates.

The 20 years it took to develop was to create a tree that produces cherries not only resistant to disease and pests, but still of world-class quality and producing an excellent coffee - not an easy ask. But they did, and now we have it for you to enjoy!

Why do we have exclusive access to Cenicafé 1?

After the variety was deemed ready to hit real-life farms, to produce the first saleable crops, it was a matter of choosing the right ones. This is 20 years in the making, remember, so it was essential that the first examples of Cenicafé 1 were showstoppers. That’s what it’s all been about, right?

They chose El Paraiso and farmer Cecilia Camacho, due to the farm’s reputation for best practice methods and high quality production. And, ahem, it happens to be a farm we’ve been working with for several years, and have guided through lots of improvements to processes.

Farmer Cecilia grew up in coffee, and now runs El Paraiso with her husband. She sees gender inequality on other farms - where wives aren’t allowed to help farm, or are given poor quality, low-earning crops to take charge of - but that’s not the case on El Paraiso. The egalitarian running of the farm has been instrumental to its success - and that’s why we’re so pleased they were chosen by Cenicafé to be one of few to grow the first batch!

What does Cenicafé 1 taste like?

I mean, obviously it’s delicious. Soft but full-flavoured, this coffee reminds us of syrupy, silky, orange blossom white tea. There’s a delicate honeycomb sweetness, and that delicious bitter dark chocolate finish you can only get from a great coffee. It tastes like it’s been under development for 20 years. So what are you waiting for - get a bag for yourself!


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