Rutas del Inca, Peru
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Cacao, Honey and Raisins
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Elevation: 1800-2400 Meters
ABOUT THE FARM
Rutas del Inca is headquartered in the Querocoto District of the Chota Province in Cajamarca, Peru. The area is known for production of potatoes, but since 2010 coffee production has proliferated thanks to support from various NGOs supporting this new crop that has great market potential. Rutas del Inca was founded on October 26, 2013, with just 33 members. The cooperative exported its first crop in 2014, cementing itself as a quality-focused, organic-certified producer.
Currently the cooperative has 258 members—30 women and 228 men—throughout 27 communities in the Querocoto, Huambos and Querocotillo Districts. These producers live between 1,800 and 2,400 meters above sea level, in temperatures ranging between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The rainy season takes place between January and March, during which terrain in the area can be rugged. However, routes exist that reach the majority of the communities in the three districts.
Rutas del Inca produces high-quality coffee created by favorable environmental conditions such as temperature, day length, a consistent humidity of 70 to 80%, high altitude, and rainfall. These conditions, combined with a wide variety of cultivars and good management practices—including proper composting, selective harvesting, well-timed fermentation, and solar drying—converge to make up an excellent coffee.
Rutas del Inca coffee is 100% washed, with 80% of the cooperative members processing the coffee individually at their farms. The coffee is depulped the same day it is harvested, then fermented for 12 to 20 hours depending on the altitude of the farm. Eighty percent of the coffee is dried in solar tents with raised beds, with the remainder dried on covered patios.
Coffee drying during the post-harvest process is carried out by each individual family, and the parchment is subsequently collected on specific days in strategic locations. The coffee is received at 12% moisture and evaluated based on its physical and other sensory qualities. The details of collection are recorded separately for each member, and payment is calculated according to the quality of the coffee.
The coffee is then milled in Chiclayo at Planta Frontera, a centralized milling plant, and shipped out of the port of Paita.