Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Coffee Plantation

Most of the time we have been here we have been working, but there are a few educational tours mixed in as well.  Yesterday we spent the afternoon getting a tour of a fair trade coffee plantation.  
David was our guide.  He first he showed us the difference between the green, red and black beans.  Coffee beans should be picked while red to have optimal caffeine and sugar content.  
These are the baby coffee plants just starting out.  They are allowed to grow for nine months before being transplanted outside.  Coffee beans are picked by hand, usually by migrant Nicaraguan seasonal workers.  
 They are paid two dollars per basket for the berries which are then measured before being rinsed and sorted.
 Sorted berries are opened to get out the beans which are dried either in the open air for 2-6 weeks or in drying ovens during the busy season.  Dried beans are roasted and ready sell.
David made coffee for us the traditional way, using grounds placed in cotton bags with water poured through.  
 We all enjoyed the coffee together along with some Costa Rican bread after the tour.  

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