Coffee method

The Unique Method of Temanggung Farmers

Coffee trees in Indonesia was introduced by the Dutch. They planted around Batavia’s territory in the late 16th centuries . After that, they spread out the seeds through the West Java region the 17th and 18th. That is why, geographically and climatologically, Indonesia is very suitable for coffee plantations, because it has a climate that is suitable for coffee growth and production.

According to Indonesia Investment data, Indonesia’s coffee plantations have a total area of approximately 1.24 million hectares, 933 hectares of robusta plantations and 307 hectares of arabica plantations. Indonesian coffee has a unique taste, which is why many world coffee connoisseurs want to enjoy this coffee. Sumatra coffee has shipped coffee beans to various countries in Germany, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Arabia and Kuwait.

Indonesian coffee export statistics January – June 2021

BeansJanFebMarAprMay June
Robusta/Arabika per ton603,783635,467646,410433,220482,612700,863
Source International Coffee Organization

In January, coffee export statistics increased, but declined in April and increased sharply in June. That means that coffee lovers in the world are increasing because coffee has become a primary need. Then, what about the current level of coffee consumption in Indonesia?

Indonesian coffee consumption

Consumption for 2018/19 is increased to 4.3 million bags, based on strong consumer demand for fresh roasted, soluble and Ready to Drink (RTD) products. Consumption for 2019/20 is forecast at 4.9 million bags based on continued strong consumer demand. Indonesia’s booming coffee-drinking lifestyle continues to expand in urban areas. Currently, coffee consumption is categorized as Third wave coffee. Third wave coffee is a time when someone thinks that coffee is not only a thirst quencher and a booster of enthusiasm, but also a drink that must be consumed or become a daily necessity.

According to the Agricultural Data and Information System Center of the Ministry of Agriculture, in 2016-2021 Indonesia’s coffee consumption is predicted to increase by 8.22%/year. In 2021, the stock of coffee is predicted to reach 795 thousand tons with consumption of 370 thousand tons, resulting in a surplus of 425 thousand tons, which means that there is an increase every year, it is enjoyed alone at home or enjoyed at the coffee shop.

Coffee production in Indonesia is 94.5% supplied from smallholder coffee entrepreneurs and 81.87% of the national coffee production is the robusta type originating from coffee centers in South Sumatra, Lampung, Bengkulu, East Java and Central Java. Then, what is the process that coffee farmers do to get quality coffee beans?

Post-harvest method

Farmers in order to produce quality coffee beans must go through a process. After picking, the coffee cherries are sorted from the damaged coffee beans. Then, post-harvest can be processed. The technique used during post-harvest will affect the quality of the coffee beans.

Full-Washed Method

In this process, coffee beans are usually put into water, then if the beans float, it means that the beans have poor quality or defects. The coffee flavor character has a more clean, light, less fruity character, the body tends to be lighter and the acidity level is higher.

Semi-Washed Method

Semi washed process, carried out twice the drying process of coffee beans. After picking, the outer skin of the coffee beans will be peeled using a depulper and dried in the sun. The coffee flavor characteristic produced in this method has a fuller body, lower acidity level compared to the previous process and spicy taste.

Natural Method 

Natural process is usually done by drying in the sun. In this process, the coffee beans must be turned over regularly, so that the coffee beans dry out to avoid mold or spoilage. The coffee flavor characteristic produced in this method has a low acidity, exotic taste and more body. 

Pulped Natural Method

In this process, the coffee beans have a higher flavor consistency because they do not go through the fragmentation stage. The initial stages are similar to the full wash process. But the difference is after the coffee fruit is peeled (pulping) the fruit is directly dried in the sun without going through washing and fermentation first. That’s why the resulting coffee will be more tasteless. However, farmers rarely use this process.

The methods used by farmers during post-harvest are different, because they are adapted to conditions in the region. There is something interesting about the Temanggung coffee farmers, they use the ripe cherries harvesting method. What is the ripe cherries harvesting method?

Ripe cherries harvesting Method

The coffee bean is the seed of a fruit often called a cherries or berry. Cherries ripeness are divided into 3 levels: The raw cherries is green. The color begins to change to yellow and gradually to a deep red almost purple color once the fruit is ripe (in most cultivars, there are some cultivars that are yellow and even orange when ripe) as the fruit becomes red it becomes very sweet and sweeter the ripper it gets.

Ripe cherries harvesting is a method used by Temanggung farmers to distinguish coffee beans that are processed naturally or dry. Natural process full red-cherry and dry process containing mixed cherries with 80-90% ripe cherries. Farmers should be selective when sorting cherries. Cherries are selected really ripe, this will increase the quantity of harvest. With good processing, this method will also produce premium coffee beans. This method is also become a key in maintaining coffee quality and increasing the price of cherries or green beans.

Coffee is very influential for economic growth in Indonesia, including Temanggung. Temanggung farmers increase the production of coffee beans using the ripe cherries method. Then, in order to increase the quality of the coffee beans, the Sumatra Coffee team provided training to coffee farmers, distributed coffee beans and held a composting program to maintain coffee trees. With this activities, These activities are expected to make local coffee go global.

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