Inza is a province in the department of Cauca, known in Colombia as La Tierra Adentro. The coffees comprising this selection come from the municipalities of Pedregal, San Antonio, and the town of Inza. Though stunning fruit is produced here at staggering altitudes, this region has long been underrepresented due to the mudslides and road closures that often make it inaccessible. However, in the last ten to fifteen years, strong efforts on both ends of the supply chain have increased small-scale producers’ visibility and brought their coffees to the attention of buyers like ourselves. This particular selection is curated by our importing partners at Red Fox Coffee Merchants, in tandem with Asorcafe, a producers’ association in Inza, founded in 2004.
In addition to enhancing producers’ access to better and more lucrative markets, Asorcafe works with private and state organizations to earn agricultural subsidies and to invest in education, job training, and healthcare for their contributing members. Though Asorcafe started with only ten members, it has grown to represent over four hundred producers in the region.
This selection is decaffeinated using the ethyl acetate process, sometimes referred to by its friendlier nickname, the “sugarcane” process. This method is popular in countries that also produce significant amounts of sugarcane, as it washes coffees with ethyl acetate - an organic, naturally occurring byproduct from the fermentation of sugarcane - once their cellular structures have been expanded and exposed through steam. The “EA” naturally binds to caffeine molecules and can then be filtered out before the coffee is re-washed and dried to retain the majority of what made it otherwise delicious.