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Cecilia Dreamt of Winning the Cup of Excelence

When we talk about Colombian coffee we normally think of a 100% Arabica coffee that grows in one of the three Andean mountain ranges (Cordilleras) that split the country from north to south. The abundance of fresh water and biologically diverse microclimates (characteristic of the equatorial tropics) make it possible to achieve numerous high quality coffee profiles.

Carmen Cecilia Montoya takes full advantage of these characteristics on her 4-acre farm located in Antioquia, a Colombian state known for its welcoming people and their entrepreneurial spirit. At 6,574 ft above sea level, the cool nights extend the production cycle leading to lower yearly yields, but provides a nearly perfect environment for the coffee beans to develop their maximum flavor, aroma and taste.

A second-generation coffee grower, Carmen Cecilia and her husband Jorge Antonio have worked the land while raising their child, Ana María. They personally oversee 7,000 Caturra coffee trees nestled in the protective shade of other native and productive trees including, avocado, lemon, mandarin and guava.

This humble family willingly shares their production processes with other growers  in an effort to expand the culture of specialty coffee within their community. When we asked Carmen what her most important accomplishment was, she proudly and cheerfully points to the 2014 Cup of Excellence, which she won in recognition of her rigorous artisanal growing process.

At 4:45 am every day, Carmen and Jorge Antonio milk the cows and then continue on to the coffee plantation to care for their crops. “In order to succeed, you don’t necessarily need the best tools but you definitely need the best will” says Jorge Antonio. The discipline and commitment to quality on this family owned and family worked farm is on display as they expand with another 1,500 new trees.

We are incredibly enthusiastic about the future of this grower and we think you will agree upon first sip.Carmen also explains the importance of Salgar’s Coffee Cooperative and the National Coffee Federation which aid farmers in developing traceability, fumigation and fertilizing programs along with the reinforcement of good agricultural practices (GAP). Noting the Rainforest and UX international certifications on her coffee, she adds: “Without their support this would have not been possible.”

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