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Building Solar Dryers for Peruvian Coffee Farmers

November 10, 2016

Coffee solar dryer in PeruCrimson Cup is contributing $5,000 to kick off a proposed $500,000 project to build solar dryers for Peruvian coffee farmers in the Junín region. By supporting better aeration, the raised beds will help improve the quality of washed coffees by mitigating the risk of negative fermentation.

The project is a joint venture of NARSA (NEGOCIACIONES AGROINDUSTRIAL AREVALO S. A.), a private co-op founded by Don Julio Abel Arevalo Tello, and its affiliated COOPERU organization, which promotes better farming practices among small-plot coffee farmers. COOPERU includes an extensive network of approximately 3,000 coffee and cacao farmers. The raised beds are being built on top of NARSA buildings in La Merced.

“We’re excited to partner with incredible organizations that have been instrumental in coffee development in the Junín region,” said Greg Ubert, Crimson Cup founder and president. “With a culture based on the principles of integrity, eco-efficiency and transparency, they are focused on improving the lives of indigenous families in the Central Forest of Peru.”

We believe this project will help us source better coffees through our Friend2Farmer direct trade program.

“Peru is known for its Fair Trade Organics and coffees that score in the mid 80s,” said Brandon Bir, our coffee sourcing and education manager. “We’re hoping that the availability of better drying and processing facilities will encourage farmers to separate their crop into micro lots of better quality that command a higher price – rewarding the farmers with a greater return on their hard work.”

Since 2013, the Crimson Cup coffee-buying team has visited Peru at least annually to establish relationships with co-ops and coffee farmers. They have made several trips into the Junín Highlands to meet with NARSA and local coffee farmers.

In April 2016, Don Arevalo visited the Crimson Cup Innovation Lab and Columbus-area coffee houses as part of the roaster’s “Meet the Farmer” series. He offered samples of our 2016 Peru La Merced Mundo Pache coffee, which was grown by farmer Pedro Cahuana Cconocc and purchased through NARSA as part of our Friend2Farmer program.

We developed our Friend2Farmer direct trade program to ensure that farmers receive a fairer share of proceeds from coffee sales. We pay a premium to farmers, who can then invest in agricultural and community improvements. Our coffee experts also collaborate with farmers on ways to improve the quality of the coffee and quality of life for farmers, workers and their communities.