Brasil Canaan Estate - Facts From the Farm
We are pleased to offer White Label Brasil Canaan Estate as a limited release coffee in our White Label program. With notes of allspice and marshmallow accompanying milk chocolatey sweetness and a subtle citrus acidity, Canaan Estate delivers a pleasing cup in any brewing method.
We had the opportunity to dig deeper on what makes this White Label Brasil Canaan Estate special in an interview with the producer, Sergio Dias. His family has owned and operated the Canaan Estate for over 70 years.
The rainy season in Brazil is when the coffee cherries actually grow. From October to April, Canaan Estate is in summer, rain falls frequently, and the coffee cherries grow and swell to maturity in the warm wet weather. In May, the dry winter harvest season begins. Temperatures can fall to 35℉ overnight, but during the day, the sun shines and warms to 75℉. Sergio says, “It’s the perfect scenario for growing coffee.”
It can take almost 3 years for a coffee plant to begin producing coffee in small quantities, and up to 5 years before the tree is fully mature. Employees at the Canaan Estate tend to juvenile plants by weeding the area around the trees, keeping pests away, and fertilizing the soil. The Catuai coffee cultivar that is used to produce this White Label coffee is only one of ten different varieties currently grown at the Canaan Estate.
In 2014, Sergio purchased 30 hectares (60~ football fields) of neighboring land to bring the overall size of the Canaan Estate to 45 hectares with over 150,000 trees. In total, Canaan Estate employs 11 full time workers who live on the plantation with their families.
In addition to working the farm, Sergio has been instrumental in growing the Cocarive Co-Op in the Mantiquiera de Minas region of Brazil. This cooperative has brought together nearly 1000 coffee farmers into a larger group where shared purchasing power helps to lower the cost of equipment and supplies. Sergio also runs JC Coffee Importers, which has had an agreement with Cocarive Co-Op members for exporting Brazillian coffee around the world, acting as a clearinghouse and broker for sales. Sergio’s commitment to fairness has had a huge impact on the region: Cocarive Co-Op members were the highest paid coffee farmers in Brazil last year.
Sergio grew up on a coffee plantation and jumped at the chance to purchase his grandfather’s farm in 2006. Coffee is in his blood, and he values seeing his employees and their families prosper. Working with coffee, helping the community of coffee farmers, and seeing the fruits of his labor keeps him excited and focused on his work.
Sergio’s personal coffee preference is a black coffee, brewed pour-over style. He carefully measures 21 grams of coffee grounds per cup, and makes his coffee one cup at a time. Most days, he has one or two cups, but when cupping or with customers, he tends to drink more.