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El Cautivo (La Coipa)

This lot from the town of EL Cautivo is particularly special, as both farms are owned and managed by women. Maria lives in the town of El Mirador; around 5km from her farm in El Cautivo. Maria works hard to provide for her family, waking up earlier to cook breakfast, before setting off for a day of picking cherry. Once she has collected all the ripe cherry for the day, Maria will load up her fresh cherry into sacks; transporting it back to her house via donkey. Here her husband, Ines Carrasco, helps her to de-pulp the cherry. For Angelita, the commute is not so easy. Angelita lives in the village of Barro Negro. Due to the thick forest in the region, to reach her farm, Angelita must travel down to La Coipa; before heading back up to El Cautivo. Due to the distance, Angelita and her husband travel together to the farm to pick and prepare the coffee cherry. Often due to the distance, Angelita and her husband will eat dinner at the farm, before travelling home.

Both farmers belong to the producer organisation, Alpes Andinos. Founded in January 2019 by just 25 farmers, today the association encompasses 115 farms from various villages; located to the north of the Cajamarca department. Like so many in this region, farm names are chosen in honour of trees or natural features on the farm that stand out among the wilderness. This is often the case in the region. Farm names will be symbolic, referring to characterisable trees or features that help distinguish the farm. Profit from coffee farming in the region is often small; however, families have created a living from for themselves and their families, relying almost solely upon coffee for income. Although other produce is grown, coffee cultivation is often the sole means of income, with all other fruits of labour reserved for personal consumption.

  • Farm El Cautivo (La Coipa)
  • Varietal Red Caturra & Pache
  • Process Fully washed
  • Altitude 1,850 – 1,900 metres above sea level
  • Town / City El Cautivo
  • Region La Coipa, San Ignacio, Cajamarca
  • Owner Maria Gloria Neyra Santos & Angelita Rafaela Ramirez Lizana
  • Tasting Notes Citric, orange, pear
  • Farm Size 2 hectares
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El Cautivo (La Coipa)

Harvest in El Cautivo spans from June to August. Coffee processing techniques in the region are tried and tested methods of production, often passed down through the generations. The process begins with the cherries being selectively handpicked, before being floated in cool clean water to remove any low-density cherries. Next, the coffee is pulped: each producer has their own de pulper located on the farm, often close to the house or main building. Once the coffee has been de-pulped, the beans are placed in a wet fermentation tank for around 36 hours, depending on the climate. The coffee is then washed three times to remove all remaining mucilage, drain any excess water, before finally placing the beans on raised beds to dry. Here, the beans will remain for around 15-20 days, depending on the level of rain.

About Peru

Coffee was introduced to Peru in the mid-18th century via neighbouring Ecuador but was not commercially exported until the late 19th century. Production was only increased significantly after the turn of the 20th century, when Peru’s default on a loan owed to the British Government saw over two million hectares of land transferred to Britain (under the name of ‘The Peruvian Country’) as a repayment. A full quarter of this was put under agricultural production, including coffee, and it was at this point that export trade began in earnest.