MEXICO: Finca Muxbal - SINGLE ORIGIN - 100% Arabica

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  • Basics
  • Nerd Zone
  • MEXICO - Finca Muxbal

    Varietal: Catuai / Caturra / Mundo Novo
    Processing: Red Honey
    Altitude: 1500 MASL
    Owner: Various Smallholders in Union Juarez
    Region: Chiapas
    Cupping Notes: Mandarin, chocolate and caramel

    Mexican coffee has come far over recent years, in terms of quality and has become hugely popular at our roastery. This coffee is sourced from Jorge Gallardo’s Muxbal smallholding in Chiapas, which is a region of volcanic soil, rich in minerals between Tacana and Tajulmulco.

    Finca Muxbal is processed using the ‘Red Honey’ method (see the "Nerd Zone" tab for details), providing sweet and bright notes such as mandarin and undertones of chocolate and caramel to deliver a great espresso-based drink, whilst also being perfect for your stove-top or filter.

  • MEXICO - Finca Muxbal

    Varietal: Catuai / Caturra / Mundo Novo
    Processing: Red Honey
    Altitude: 1500 MASL
    Owner: Various Smallholders in Union Juarez
    Region: Chiapas
    Cupping Notes: Mandarin, Chocolate and Caramel

    History of Coffee in Mexico

    In Mexico, Raw Material’s work is based in Oaxaca and Chiapas. From afar, Mexico is a growing economic force, ranked 64th globally in GDP per capita. However, the coffee-producing states in southern Mexico face a very different economic reality. Oaxaca and Chiapas are the two poorest states in Mexico with poverty rates of 60-80% and extreme poverty rates of 20-40% Production yields have become dangerously low in these regions. Over the last ten years coffee leaf rust disease and the lack of financial or agricultural means to tackle it has reduced production by up to 90% in some regions. The average yield in Oaxaca is now just 100kg of parchment per hectare. For context, in Colombia, the average yield is 2,400kg per hectare.

    The vast majority of Mexico’s 500,000 coffee producers are smallholder farmers and have one hectare or less of land under coffee. This makes the average annual production for many producers just 100kg, making coffee farming more and more

    unsustainable. This is fuelling widespread migration to urban centres in Mexico and the United States. In short, coffee production is disappearing.

    Finca Muxbal

    Finca Muxbal is located in southern Chiapas, right on the border with Guatemala. The farm is located close to both the

    Tacana and Tajumulco volcanoes which provide plenty of mineral content for the soil. The name Muxbal means ‘place surrounded by clouds’ in the local Mame language and the farm sits on a raised plateau that affords the benefit of a relatively flat area to grow coffee. The plantation covers a huge 236 hectares in total though 40% of this land is given over to natural reserve land that is home to a huge array of wildlife including wild turkeys, hummingbirds, Quetzals, Tepezcuintles (feral pigs), wildcats, Pizotes (skunk like creatures), armadillos, coral snakes, and parrots. The Muxbal and Zarco rivers also flow through the property and bring fresh water to the farm. This leaves around 140 hectares of land under coffee, a very large farm by Mexican standards. Processing for washed, honey and natural coffees is all done centrally, and Jorge has invested significant funds in recent years in build a large amount of drying beds and a huge covered drying area to process larger amounts of specialty grade coffees. We are working with Jorge Gallardo, owner of Muxbal, his mother Maeggi, to pilot a smallholder program with some of the permanent employees at Muxbal. Most of these employees are also smallholder farmers in their own right (most of them technically grow their coffee in Guatemala) and Raw Material are building a program to buy their parchment through Finca Muxbal and finish the drying using Jorge’s beds and covered dryer to increase the value and thus profitability for these smallholder producers.

    Red Honey Process

    Cherries are selected from the ripest pickings before removing any floaters then resting in water for 24 hours. The coffee is then pulped without using any water and dried on meshed matted patios for 48 hours. Finally the coffee is moved to raised beds in the covered dryer for around 15 days.

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