Santa Leticia have continued the long standing tradition of growing coffee since 1873. Known for growing one of the most popular coffee varietal called Bourbon which is a botanical variety of Coffee Arabica and one of the oldest and most traditional of coffee varieties. Bourbon coffee produces a cup quality of delicate taste, clean, agreeable exquisite aroma, and added to these characteristics, excellent acidity and body.
Renewing the farm is a permanent activity since 1965 at Santa Leticia. This keeps the farm young, giving outstanding results. The process of “root graft- ing” all the new “seedlings” started in 1992. In this process, only the root system is affected and the productive part of the plant will not be affected in any way, therefore having a stronger root system and a wonderful crop of Bourbon and Pacamara varietals of the Arabica type. This is done with Robusta roots when the seedlings are ready to enter the nursery, making the root system of the plants stronger and repelling a large variety of insects which would otherwise weaken the crop “cafetos”. After root grafting the cafetos, they spend one year in the nursery and then they are moved to what will be their permanent spot in the farm.
Facts and benefits
A massive root system is used which has the capacity of absorbing more nutrients and water, so the “cafetos” do not suffer from neither “hydro stress” or “wind stress”. Given the insect repelling characteristic of the “Robusta” root system, the use of chemical products is not necessary for this and our productions are from 15% to 20% higher and organic.
Between the months of March and May, the coffee forest looks as if a delicate layer of snow had fallen on the coffee fields and an overwhelming jasmine aroma intoxicates the atmosphere, to this you might add the buzz of hundreds of honey bees hovering around the fields.
From December to early March, Santa Leticia farm is full of the joyful coffee pickers, fulfilling their cultural tradition, in one of the most important activities of El Salvador’s “Crop Season”. At 11 o’clock in the morning the first group of people come with their coffee filled bags to be weighed. Only ripe beans are accepted so the coffee beans are hand selected to separate any green beans that were accidentally picked and mixed with the ripe ones. Once the selection is done, the coffee is weighed and the trucks are loaded and taken to the mill.
The milling process begins
All premium coffee berries must be fully ripened with a dark cherry colour for them to be accepted at the mill, high quality is paramount and important for the uniqueness of their coffee. Once the trucks enter the mill and pass the weighing station, the berries are washed with spring water to begin the depulping process.
The berries are then passed through to the natural fermentation process. Finally the berries are set to be sun dried on our brick patios in order to bring down the humidity of our unhulled coffee to 12%. Now our unhulled golden coffee beans pass to a resting process that takes 45 days, where its natural oils will become evenly distributed. Finally, we hull the beans, hand clean them and send them to our buyers all around the world including Santiago in Brisbane.