Production in Colombia is very much dominated by small holders that band together into Cooperatives and grower’s associations. This means the vast majority of coffee in Colombia comes in big lots that contain coffee from many growers. This is further complicated by the fact that the majority of coffee is processed on the farms by the producers themselves. Depending on the mind set and skill of the individual producer, it results in the fact you may have great coffee being mixed with average coffee. Furthermore it is common to get variance in humidity level and bean density which can impact the overall quality of the lot. While many of these co-op lots are of extremely high quality, it has been the mission of the specialty industry to hone in and separate the coffee from the very best producers.
El Voladero is farm situated in Acevedo, Huila, and is home to Jeremias Rojas and his family. He has lived here his whole life and built his own house here after inheriting the 1.5 hectare plot from his father. He has been a coffee producer for many years, though it is only more recently that he has learned about specialty coffee after being inspired by his brother-in-law who had knowledge about producing this way. Now he is focused on producing the best coffee he can to help provide a better income for his family and to help them prosper in the future. He likes working with Banexport as they have helped him to learn how to produce better coffees, but also for the transparency they have about payments for the coffee they buy from him.
During the harvest he will pick the cherry depending on the ripeness (deep purple) before pulping and leaving the coffee to go through a double fermentation to help develop complex flavours. The coffee is fermented for 20 hours and then washed and left to ferment again for another 20 hours before being washed and left to fry in parabolic driers.