Colombia is a country of great diversity, both geographically, culturally, and linguistically – it boasts over 68 ethnic languages as well as Spanish and even English in one of the archipelagos. Its land stretches from the Amazon Rainforest to the highlands of the Andes mountains, and was once the worlds largest producer of washed coffees, from three main geographical areas trisected by the Andes mountain range.
When ripe, the coffee cherries are picked and go through an initial flotation sorting to remove underripes, sticks, and general debris before passing through a pulping machine and working their way down the washing channels to the fermentation tanks. Here, they will sit for typically 8-14 hours, before moving to the drying patios or guardiolas for controlled drying down to 10-12% moisture. Typically in Colombia, this is carried out on the farm, with processed cherries then being taken to a dry mill for careful grading, tasting, and blending. The coffee is stored in parchment until ready for export, when it is hulled at the dry mill and bagged for shipping.