Via Bom Dia products only use coffee beans that are classified as 'relationship coffee'. A new practice in the coffee world, these beans are even better than 'direct trade' coffee. It's a business practice founded on the belief that not only should you go directly to the farmer (never using a middle man), you should also partner with them to help them grow, get financing, form co-ops, or help them achieve whatever hurdle is impeding their farm's growth & prosperity. Also, by knowing the farmer personally and by buying beans directly from him, you can ensure they are being paid fare wages to support their livelihood and families.
Relationship coffee represents a unique opportunity for coffee drinkers to contribute towards the success and development of coffee-producing communities in third-world countries. Thus, enjoying Via Bom Dia coffee is something you can feel really good about.
Here are the 4 Areas Where Our Coffee Currently Comes From:
Remudadero, Mexico (from the state of Colima)
Coffee grows all along Mexico's Pacific coast. The Sierra Madre mountain range runs from Chiapas in the South to Nyarit in the North and boasts one of the best coffee climates around. Halfway between the beach side towns of Puerto Vallarta and Acapulco you will find the small state of Colima.
The state of Colima produces some of the finest specialty coffees in the country. It is defined by a volcano, Mt. Colima, which is one of the most active volcanoes in Central America and the coffee grown on its slopes is incredibly rich. However, you may have never heard of coffee from this area. That is because to-date all coffee in Colima has been sold only to roasters in Mexico! In fact, 80% of Mexico’s coffee is exported by just four companies so it's hard to come by a small specialty coffee farm like this one. Only 10-15% of the country’s coffee exports are considered specialty. We were lucky to meet the farmers from Remudadero and to bring in some of the best specialty beans of the region!
The community of Remudadero has about 80 people. The farmer group has 8 members whose farms are within two kilometers of their washing station and drying patios. Beautiful lush landscapes and an elevation of 3,900 ft., this is a perfect region for growing high-quality beans with smooth, nutty, chocolatey flavor.
Silimakuta , Indonesia (from the island of Sumatra)
Of Indonesia’s 17,000 islands, 6,000 are inhabited, and only a handdful are familiar to the world of coffee– Sulawesi, Flores, Bali, Java and Sumatra. Our Silimakuta beans are from the island of Sumatra, the world's sixth largest island. Silimakuta refers to a grouping of villages in the Lake Toba region. Silimakuta means “the five villages,” and refers to the five clan families that make up the community. The coffee grown on the shores of Lake Toba is some of the most famous in the coffee world. Incredibly rich due to a perfect coffee climate, tropical, hot and humid with lush rain forest. These beans are grown at a very high altitude of 5,000 ft. and have a bold, full-bodied, dynamic flavor with virtually no acidity.
Burundi is divided by a narrow line of tall mountains that separate the Nile and Congo River basins. Along this range 800,000 coffee farmers produce a coffee like no other in the world. Burundi is a very small country - the size of Maryland - and most of these farms are small too – with an average of 200 coffee trees or less. Still over 90% of the country’s GDP is produced by these backyard gardens. Coffee is a vital part of Burundi, and this vitality shines through in the cup in the form of complex, rare and balanced flavor.
The Buhowra washing station is in the Kayanza province, a decent drive north from the capital of Bujumbura. Wide dirt roads stretch over the rolling hills that are heavily grazed. As elevation increases so does tree cover, with banana and coffee trees peaking out from under pockets of forest. As nearly all of the farming families turn out for an event for them to cup their own coffees, it is also clear that coffee is what centers this community.
It is one of the smallest countries in Africa, but it ranks 2nd in the continent’s coffee production and 7th on the world stage. Yes, a country the size of Oregon produces more coffee than Kenya or Tanzania. Unlike Kenya or Tanzania, however, coffee estates or plantations are not common in Uganda, accounting for less than 7% of all coffee production. Uganda’s estimated 1.3 smallholder coffee farmers each own, on average, half a hectare of land.
Behind these numbers is a story of a mighty force for change. This is the story of Ugandan coffee: it is a tiny country, with tiny farms, that is making mighty strides through unique specialty coffees and progressive agricultural research programs. The beans are grown at 5,900 ft. in elevation and have an extremely chocolatey, complex, and full-bodied delicious flavor.