New Coffee from Colombia, South America
I recently teamed up with a close friend whose family has been cultivating coffee for generations. They have a farm in the best area for growing coffee in Colombia called Risaralda, which is known for its volcanic, mineral rich lands and also for its natural water springs. She has been perfecting the beans to insure a great flavor and a great rating with the baristas (rated always in the high 80's). Her product is grown organically and has the rainforest alliance seal and also the seal of the Colombian Federation of Coffee Growers. She mostly exports to Europe and other areas. She has given me the opportunity to develop the US market with her. Since I drink coffee but not as an aficionado I have some learning to do. I assume that the high 80's rating is pretty high? We brought in roasted whole beans, roasted ground coffee and whole beans not roasted. Is there a big enough market for beans not roasted to justify bringing it in? I was told that my sample of roasted whole beans was not toasted enough and that the high end market of the US preferred a European roast. Since Europe has different tastes in toasting depending on the country I need to know what level the US market asks for. Any suggestions? What markets should I go after?
11-26-2012 06:26 PM
Roast preference can be all over the place depending on who is drinking it. In southern CA there is a resurgence in interest in lighter roasts. Regardless I think there is a market for green beans as long as you can find the market. It all depends on how much you have available for sale. There are also many home roasters who could be interested in buying greens from you. Just keep in mind that generally speaking greens are fresh for approx 2 years, once roasted the coffee is only fresh for approx 3 weeks and once ground should be brewed immediately. There is much debate on this topic but these are the generally agreed numbers based on the more particular drinkers.
Do you have a method for getting the greens into the US? If so you might just need an official Q grader to rate them for you. If you don't have a way yet to import them then you might want to look for a partnership with a US based coffee importer. Either way it will all depend on the quality, qty and price. Let us know if you have any other questions.
I agree with bkeith72. I don't see a market for importing roasted beans from Colombia. Not with all the local roasters you will find around the country that ship. As far as green beans, unless the quality/quantity is significant you may have to market to home roasters or coop's that buy smaller quantities. There is competition out there for selling green but don't let that deter you. Just find a different angle and make sure your quality is superior. To answer your question; high 80's is good 90+ coffee is excellent.
I have access to quite a bit. In whole beans I can get about 30,000 lbs of organic whole beans a year and it can grow since we have more hectares to grow into. We also have access to an abundant amount of regular coffee. I am in the process of doing the importation myself but I want to grab a few volume clients first. I am also in talks with a higher grade producer. Some of these growers currently supply the Colombian federation of coffee growers and they are looking now to move their product directly since the quality is of a higher level. Where do I find a Q grader?
I might start having access to a high 90 graded coffee which offers normal, organic and exotic coffees. They have won several international awards as best coffee for that year. Obviously this coffee would be much more expensive.
Originally Posted by Essence
I'm interested. I'm creating a site that is all about whole beans, roasts, grounded coffee. Let me know if possible to drop ship your item.
I may also be open to buy from a distributor you find here in the US.
Let me know where you are with the process.