Producer: Maria Melva Rodriguez
Process: Natural (72 hours maceration)
Notes: Cranberry, marzipan, spiced rum
Honduras is the largest coffee producer in Central America and the sector still accounts for a large part of the country’s national export revenue – of which millions of livelihoods are directly or indirectly dependent. It has ideal conditions to produce exceptional coffees due to its high elevations, fertile volcanic soils, and an ideal climate that is suited to coffee cultivation. Supported by significant investment from the Honduran Government, there is also a lot of expertise in the country, which makes it a highly respected amongst the global coffee community. However, the country is still recovering from the devastating hurricanes Eta and Iota which made landfall in 2020 and has affected up to 60% of the coffee farmlands.
Maria Melva Rodriguez owns the farm Las Casitas in the Agua Caliente area of Corquin, Copan and has been cultivating coffee for 15 years. Although her farm is less than one hectare of land, she maintains it under natural forest canopy. This encourages greater biodiversity and provides ample shade for the coffee plants to flourish without the need for chemical fertilizers or pesticides
Since Maria does not have sufficient land production to make a living from coffee selling through commercial routes, she has decided to focus entirely on quality and maximise her earnings through investment in quality coffee production. Due to the increased income generated from specialty microlot sales, Maria has been able to regenerate areas of her farm and improve her living conditions. After selective harvesting only the ripe red coffee cherries, Maria delivers her coffee to the local mill whey they are cleaned, washed and floated to remove any immature or defective cherries. The coffee is then sealed in barrels to macerate for 72 hours before being turned regularly on drying beds for up to 30 days.