Each month I get the pleasure of choosing a new single origin coffee to purchase and roast for our Origin Select project. While we always carry a standard selection of single origins representing some of our favorite growing regions, this gives us the opportunity to highlight some exceptional beans on a seasonal basis that we might otherwise have missed out on!
Our Origin Select coffee this month comes from Northwestern Nicaragua, the Department of Nueva Segovia. This Fair Trade Certified coffee comes to us from PRODECOOP, a second-level cooperative organization that groups 38 grassroots cooperatives made up of 2,300 small producers. This organically grown coffee that we selected this month is a top-notch example of Nicaraguan coffee. Typically the classic Nicaraguan roast profile tends to lean a little to the darker side, however we thought it would be a shame to cover up the subtleties of lemon, praline and herbal notes on the finish, so we chose a medium roast to bring out the best in this organically grown coffee.
Over its existence, PRODECOOP has developed a long line of programs that aim to support its members in a multitude of different ways. They are able to fund these programs using their Fair Trade premium. The initiatives include supporting educational opportunities for children, providing loans to women in and affiliated with the organization, providing cervical-cancer screenings and other health-care services, offering member education regarding pest control and fertilization, and creating and supporting systems to increase food security for the communities.
About 30 percent of the coop membership is female. The cooperative is certified Fair Trade, and 100 percent of its members participate. The average annual export for the co-op is 30,000 bags, about half of which is certified organic.