For the better part of the past two hundred years, coffee has been grown by subsistence farmers in the southern Mexico region of Chiapas. The forested mountainsides of Chiapas are uniquely suited for coffee production. Since the coffee crop in Chiapas can be grown in the shade of the forest land, this advantage provides growers with all the benefits of the forest itself, while enabling them to produce more complex flavored, sustainable shade-grown coffees.
After moving to San Francisco, Rosalba Cifuentes Tovia realized that specialty coffee shops in the US rarely featured Mexican coffee. Aware that her extended family grew coffee in the mountains of Bella Vista in Chiapas, Mexico, she began to export coffee from them as well as from other farmers in the region. By focusing on improving the quality of coffee grown, she has changed the lives of many smallholders there. With its sweetness, full body and raspberry nuance, the Mayan Harvest showcases the quality possible in coffees from Mexico.
Mexico Chiapas Bella Vista Mayan Harvest comes to us from a group of 38 family-owned coffee producers averaging four hectares of growing land within the municipality of Bella Vista. Rosalba Cifuentes was raised in the Bella Vista coffee community and has since returned to her childhood roots as a means to provide assistance to the smallholders there.
Since coffee represents the sole income source for the majority of these growers, special care is taken to ensure excellence in every aspect of production, including attention to detail as evidenced by their hand selection of coffee cherries. Eventually, Rosalba noted that women-produced coffees were cleaner and more fruit forward. To recognize these women for their commitment to quality, Rosalba separated the coffee produced by the women from the community lot and paid them higher wages to match the superior quality of the coffee. This exceptional Mayan Harvest represents the fruit of their labors.
Grower: 38 family-owned producers
Region: Bella Vista, Chiapas
Soil: Sandy loam
Variety: Bourbon, Caturra and Catimor
Process: Fully washed and sun-dried