Pacas, Catuai, Icatu, Ihcafe90, Lempiras
December – March
Finca Liquidámbar was set up by a pioneering group of individuals (most of whom work for Cocafelol cooperative) passionate about organic coffee production. They turn coffee waste into organic fertilizer; with pulp developed compost processed by Californian red worm. They also use the mucilage to make different products that serve as foliar fertilizer to the farm. Some experiments they have made with organic fertilizer have been so successful they have brought the technique to Cocafelol Cooperative and rolled them out to other organic coffee producers.
The farm employs 18 members of staff and 12 more in the harvest. Until recently, this was spread across 28 hectares of production, but this has now grown into 45 acres with coffee trees following a programme of new planting, with the remaining 15 hectares under their ownership remaining dedicated forest.
During harvest when the coffee is at its optimum ripeness, cherry is collected manually by men and women, careful to collect only the ripe fruits. Then it is transported to the beneficio of one of the owners, to be pulped and washed. The following day it is brought to a drying area for a controlled sun drying on African beds, which takes about 12-15 days depending on the ambient temperature. When the coffee reaches 12% humidity, it is sent to the exporter to prepare for export.
Lempira, the varietal that shares a name with the department and is significant in Honduras, was until recently rust-resistant, so having a mix of varieties on the farms as a way of increasing genetic diversity and therefore crop security is important. Ihcafe90 is a Catura/Timor Hybrid cross with high yield potential, selected by Instituto Hondureño del Café.
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