85+ Find: Celso Mayta (Bolivia)

85+ Find: Celso Mayta (Bolivia)
Origin Bolivia
Region Caranavi
Farm / Coop Cafe Golondrina (Swallow's Farm)
Altitude 5,270 - 5,890 ft.
Varietals
Catuai (80%), Icatu (10%), Typica (Criollo) (5%), Caturra (5%)
Processing Fully washed
Certifications Organic by Baystate Organic Certifiers
Cup Notes Cupping Score: 86.5 points. FLAVOR/AROMA: Fruity, cinnamon. Light chocolate, red apple, marzipan . ACIDITY: Complex citric (mandarin, lemon, oranges). OTHER: Honey, sweet. Transparent, multi-faced. Heavy, creamy aftertaste. Excellent choice for iced coffee or cold brew.

 Celso Mayta's farm is called Finca Golondrina (Swallow's Farm), after the swallows that fly in the sky above his coffee trees. It is located in Zona Illimani, Colonia Copacabana, Caranavi Province of Bolivia. Celso belongs to a very small cooperative, APROCAFE, with only seven members, and works with his family to process and sell their coffee.

Celso was born in 1972 but he is already an expert coffee producer, and an inspiration for other coffee growers. In 2004, things were not going so well. Celso was ready to burn his coffee trees, which he had worked with his family since he was three years old, and was all set to grow coca leaves. Growing coca is legal in Bolivia and is a centuries-old Andean tradition. "Until then coffee was only good to survive, coca was better," he says. "Bolivian coffee was exported with a 20% discount because quality was poor and unpredictable. I didn't know what quality meant, so out of curiosity I decided to attend some classes about improving coffee growing practices." What he learned paid off. In 2005 he decided to participate in the second Bolivia Cup of Excellence competition. His coffee submission came in second place and Celso sold the lot on the international auction for $17,000 (six times what he would have received in the domestic market). With the money, he tripled the size of his coffee plantation.

Invalsa has been buying Celso's coffee since 2010, and since 2015 we have been working with him to develop an improved-varietal coffee seeding nursery and mechanized washing station at Finca Golondrina and Finca Fortin. We are very proud of our ongoing partnership with Celso.

Celso's wife, Carmen and his son Wilmer work in the family farm. His daughter, little Susie (on the pictures below) is just beginning to help out.

Explore the region of Caranavi in Bolivia yourself, here:


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