Organic Bolivian Caranavi MediumHigher Grounds Coffee
Profile: Brown Sugar, Red Apple, Mellow
Best brewing: Immersion
Recommended ratio: 15:1
Higher Grounds Coffee is Certified Organic, beyond fair trade, shade grown, arabica beans, roasted with love in small batches in Michigan by a B Corp.
So who grows this amazing coffee?
Origin: Caranavi, Bolivia
Cooperative (link to Fair Trade Proof profiles): Union Pro-Agro, AIPEP
Partners since: 2011, 2006
Elevation: 1000-1750 M
Varietals Grown: Typica, Caturra
Harvest: September through January
Unión Pro-Agro (UPA) was established in 2000, in the Cantón of Chijchipani. Many inhabitants are of Quechua and Aymara origin, and first or second generation migrants from the Altiplano, a region severely affected by drought in the 1970s which led to massive migration to the Caranavi region. Today UPA has 192 members and their families spread out across 11 different colonias. Within Cantón Chijchipani, more than 85% of the population earns a living exclusively from coffee cultivation.
We also source from the nearby AIPEP cooperative. In the spring of 2006, FECAFEB facilitated an extensive tour of the Bolivian Yungas region for Cooperative Coffees, and we were so impressed by AIPEP’s organization and member participation, that we decided to partner with them. Out of that visit, came our first contracts of Bolivian Fair Trade and organic coffee which helped AIPEP eventually achieve FLO certification and its first exports via FECAFEB. We have continued to purchase coffee from AIPEP every year since. In 2016, the organization obtained its own export permit and Fair Trade certification in order to export coffee directly to Cooperative Coffees. This is quite a feat for an organization with such a small number of farmers! At its heart, AIPEP has also kept solid mechanisms for assuring participation and administrative oversight by members. Every time we visit AIPEP, their board of directors convenes a meeting at the local two-room school house, so that a majority of members can meet their buyers.
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Interested in low acidity coffee? Check out our blog post COFFEE ACIDITY: THE SCIENCE AND THE EXPERIENCE for more info and suggestions.