We are always commited to extending our range of coffees and for the first time we extend our offerings to include coffee from Honduras. Having always included offerings from neighbouring Central American countries, Costa Rica and El Salvador, we could not let this minnow neighbour pass us by any longer.
If you talk to anyone in coffee, the names Marysabel Caballero and her husband Moises Herrera, are the superstars of coffee in Honduras. Working with over 200 hectares of land, together with Marysabel’s father Fabio Caballero, these 2nd and 3rd generation coffee farmers together with Fabio have been rewarded many times for their commitment to developing coffee quality in Honduras.
Don Fabio Caballero inherited large areas of land in and around Marcala from his father, who was one of the pioneers of coffee cultivation in Honduras. After many years of poor profits, he decided to hand out land to his children, and especially to his daughter Marysabel and her husband Moises Herrera. Moises brought his own farms in to the family business and together they have almost 200 hectares of coffee separated into 17 different farms.
They have since been extremely successful producing quality coffees and have contributed to the improving reputation of Honduran quality coffees. Everything they do at their farms is documented, and they invest considerable time and resources both in new equipment and planting of new coffee varieties in order to improve the quality of the coffee.
The Caballeros are extremely committed to the environmental sustainability of their farms. A lot of their energy and focus goes towards improving the soil of their farms to ensure a healthy growing environment for their coffee shrubs. Therefore, they produce organic fertilizer made from cow and chicken manure mixed with pulp from coffee cherries and other organic material. This is used in addition to some mineral fertilizer to ensure that the coffee plants get the nutrients they need. Oranges, avocados, flowers, bananas and other fruits are also grown at the farms, but mainly for the pickers to eat and to create biodiversity at the farms that ensures good growing conditions and shade for the coffee trees.
Don Fabio, Marysabel and Moises has always focused on quality leading to getting 3rd price at the annual SCAA “Coffee of the year” competition in 2010. They have also done well in the Cup of Excellence for many years, as one of the few producers from their area.
Their main cultivar is Catuai, however they also have other cultivars like Java and Pacamara, as well as Geishas. Local pickers are hired and trained to only select the ripest cherries. All pickers are equipped with 2 bags while picking: one bag for ripe cherries, and another bag to put the overripe, damaged and under-ripe coffee cherries. Coffee is collected every afternoon and weighed, and all pickers get paid by the weight of the cherries they have picked.
After de-pulping the mucilage is removed with the use of a Penagos aqua pulper. Then the parchment is fermented for 12 hours before it is washed using african washing techniques which helps sorting floaters and undeveloped beans from the denser and more developed coffee. After washing, the beans are soaked for about 12 hours in clean running water.
The coffee is dried on the patio, raised beds and in the sun or shade for anything between 11–20 days. The coffees are piled up and covered when its hard sun during midday, when it rains and at night.
In our quest to continually establish a chain of purchase from farmers we feel are working hard to deliver top tiered coffees worldwide, we hope to showcase coffee from the Caballeros every season.