Astrid Medina knows that the quality premium paid for her coffee by the highest bidder will bring rewards for her entire family, her employees and positive improvements to her farm, Buena Vista.
“I will invest it in improving our house, providing better living conditions for our farm manager, our employees, expanding the “beneficiadero” (post-harvest processing facilities), because we think about growing more coffee in the future, having better technology, improving everything.” - Astrid
She and her husband work tirelessly on their farm to ensure high-quality specialty coffee. Ultimately, this has enabled her eldest daughter to study environmental engineering in Bogota.
You could say that coffee is a way Astrid is able to keep her family together & a way to help them thrive. So coffee has allowed Astrid to keep her family together and help each other.
Take a look at what Astrid has to offer below!
|Varietal & Process||Caturra|
|Cupping Notes||Tangerine, Lychee, Passion Fruit, Panela|
FARM AND PRODUCTION DATA
|FARM NAME: FINCA BUENA VISTA|
|CLOSEST TOWN: GAITANIA|
|REGION: PLANADAS, TOLIMA|
|FARM SIZE (HA): 15HA, 13.5 HA OF COFFEE, 1.5 OF FOREST RESERVE|
|HARVEST SEASON: MAY TO AUGUST, MITACA IN NOV-DEC|
|HARVEST PEAK: JULY|
|APPROX. ANNUAL PRODUCTION: 180 CARGAS 22,500KG|
|VARIETIES: CATURRA (20%), CASTILLO (40%), COLOMBIA (40%)|
|DRYING NOTES: 8 DAYS IN FULL SHADE, 12 - 20 DAYS ON A COVERED DRYING BED WITH 2 LEVELS|
|DRYING AVERAGE TREES PER HECTARE: 5000|
|LOT 1: KIWI, STAR FRUIT, LIME, CLEAN|
|LOT 2: TANGERINE, LYCHEE, PASSION FRUIT, PANELA|
|FARMERS´S & SPOUSE’S NAMES: RAUL ANTONIO DURAN|
|FARMER´S YEAR OF BIRTH: 9 JANUARY 1977|
|CHILDREN´S NAME & YEARS OF BIRTH: ALEJANDRA born in 1998 & ALEJANDRO born in 2008|
|NUMBER OF PEOPLE EMPLOYED AT FARM: 2 PERMANENT WORKERS|
ABOUT THE FARMER & HER FAMILY
Astrid inherited the farm along with her siblings in 2006 when her father was killed in the internal conflict in Colombia. Two of her siblings sold her their share. She currently works the farm with her husband Raul, while one sister remains a partner.
In 2015 Astrid entered her coffee for the first time in the Cup of Excellence, and won first place! This moment began a journey in specialty coffee that has taken her to Japan, the US and Greece.
Astrid’s daughter Alejandra is studying Environmental Engineering at El Bosque University in Bogotá. Astrid is extremely proud of her daughter, and grateful to specialty coffee for giving her the means to pay for her daugther´s continuing education. When she graduates, Alejandra hopes to travel overseas to study English.
Astrid’s son Alejandro is 9 years old, and accompanied Astrid and Raul on their trips to the US and Greece. He wants to be a barista, and often shares his impressions of the cup profile with his parents. Read Astrid’s story, in her own words, on our blog.
ABOUT THE EXPORTER
Alejandro Renjifo, Fairfield’s founder and president, has a background one might not expect from someone bumping along the dirt roads in and around Acevedo. In his early career as a coffee economist, Alejandro held long stints at both the International Coffee Organization (ICO) and the Federación Nacional de Cafeteros de Colombia (FNC). One highlight from these experiences is that during his time he was responsible for launching the FNC’s specialty division in North America. During a time when Colombian coffee was mainly characterized by Juan Valdéz, a fictional character, Alejandro was pushing for the FNC to recognize the incredible diversity of Colombian terroir.
This background and history, while impressive, isn’t what inspires our confidence in Alejandro and his team. What mostly strikes us about the Fairfield team is that they value and have cultivated excellent palates as well as possessing a keen sense of how to forge good and interpersonal relations with each smallholder with whom they work. Understanding and finding the balance between these two elements of procuring specialty requires great skill.
Fairfield considers three variables to determine the quality of a “Single Origin Program” coffee and hence, whether a coffee will be purchased:
1. Green bean moisture content of 10% to 11%. The country average in Colombia is 12%.
2. Yield Factor of <90. The country average in Colombia is 94+. 88 is an almost perfect YF.
Yield factor refers to the volume in kilograms of parchment required to produce one bag of Excelso commercial grade green coffee, screen size 14+, 12*60*. Fairfield exports screen size 15+, 3*020. A lower YF requirement ends in shipping an overall lower quality due to the blending of 14+ screen size and the maximum amount of low grade/defects, in order to reach the desired volume for each lot.
*The minimum Excelso Coffee that can be exported from Colombia is known as “UGQ”. This is a coffee lot that must contain 45%-50% of screen size 14 (with a maximum of 5% that falls between screen size 12-14) and 50% screen size 15.
The values “12*60” and “3*20” (above) refer to the preparation basis of a 500g sample, which allows up to a maximum number of x*y defects of Type I and Type II (from SCAA protocol).
Fairfield’s preparation is 3*20 over screen size 15, which approximates the SCAA Specialty Grade, with the exception that they don’t include screen size 14 and SCAA does. The other difference from SCAA standards is that that Fairfield doesn’t promise “0” defects of Type I, as in their experience, this is an improbable promise to deliver on.
1. 86+ points minimum cup score. Fairfield’s cuppers Eduardo, Ana Beatriz, and Esnaider are trained to be very strict. In a typical year, the team rejects 40% (+/- 5%) of coffees that meet criteria 1 and 2, but fail 3. Fairfield doesn’t like to give high scores as a selling point. They don’t buy to stock up and then seeking clients. Instead, they buy and sell coffees that meet the 3 criteria for clients that are on-board for their “Single Origin Programs” (i.e. clients that are committed to the program).
The only time an exception is made is when a client specifically requests other types of coffee (e.g. Acevedo Regional Blends). Even in these cases, the coffees are very good, as they meet the strictest parameters: 1 & 2.
Astrid highly values her relationship with Fairfield Coffee and only sells to Alejandro. “Selling coffee abroad is hard, there is a lot of competition,” she said. “You have to work with people you trust. Alejandro is transparent, and he genuinely cares for the people who work so hard to produce coffee.”
We are committed to long term producer relationships as we source top tier coffees world wide. In tandem with this, we have teamed up with Enveritas to connect the coffee community and radicalize the value chain- building a greater value for the coffee farmer, coffee roaster, and coffee enthusiast alike. We do this by providing a sustainability verification report for our farmers. Have a look at Astrid’s report below.
her IKAWA roast profile
Thanks to IKAWA, you are able to view Astrid’s roast profile. Anyone interested in building a suitable roasting profile benefits from the information IKAWA shares. Review Astrid’s results here.