July 2019: Feature number 9.
Viking Coffee Roasters had us tickled pink with the opportunity to feature such a rare and interesting coffee from Colombia.
As part of our July Collab we explored;
A coffee cherry that ripens to pink, something that very few producers in Hulia, Colombia can claim to grow. Gabriel Castano is one of those farmers, in fact Gabriel was the first farmer in Colombia to cultivate such a rare and unique coffee. The story goes that Rodrigo Sanchez, a producer form the Municipality of Palestina organised producers from other municipalities to bring their coffee to market. One day Rodrigo got the chance to cup the Pink Bourbon and was amazed by the cupping results. At this time he was one of the only people aware of the existence of this unusual tree and set about conducting his own local research about where this what producers had this unusual tree on their farm. Pink bourbon, a hybridised varietal of yellow and red Bourbon (natural mutations themselves). It is a recessive gene that causes Pink Bourbon to ripen the way it does. While Pink bourbon has a greater resistance to rust, a high yield and requires little fertiliser it remains very rare because of its ease of reverting back to yellow or red due to genetic material transferred through pollen grains, meaning it has to be grown in isolation an contained.
The Parent Variety: (Segment available to subscribers only at this time)
The Department (State)
Located within the mountainous South West of Colombia, along side the Andes is Huila. This department (state) produces more coffee than any other department in Colombia, and none more famed. Boasting nitrogen rich volcanic soil and altitude thanks to its location near Nevado del Huila Volcano, Colombia’s second highest peak; Huila has become renown for its coffees. Common attributes include fruitiness, full body, syrupy texture and medium to high Acidity. Another benefit of Huila’s altitude is its temperatures, cooler temperatures associated with altitude reduce the risk of coffee Borer infestation. A pest that is is affecting some producers and their crops at lower altitudes (below 1300masl), one notable result of rising temperatures influenced by climate change. With just shy of 155,000 hectares of shade or partial shade Grown coffee, Huila is a made up of many small lot holders, with an average farm size of just 1.5ha. Small but quality focused, this community produced 2.6 million 60kg bags of coffee in 2016, or 18% of Colombia’s coffee yield. Proximity to the equator allows for harvesting of coffee in Huila to take place almost year round, but the lush climate hasn’t just made Huila a Great are for growing coffee; Local farmers cultivate many crops including cacao, bananas and Yucca.
Thanks to Cofinet for the images and background information.