September 20th - 27th, 2014


Wednesday, 24th of September

As I said earlier, this was a little bit of heaven, sitting on the veranda, cup of coffee in hand and just enjoying the sounds of the wings of the birds....hard to capture them, they were very active. After breakfast it was time for our coffee tour reviewing the entire process of coffee in here which is a major producer of coffee with 160 hectares of their 200 under coffee production.

Historical data indicates that the Jesuits brought coffee seeds to South America with them circa 1730. Tradition says that the coffee seeds were brought by a traveler from Guyana who passed through Venezuela before reaching Colombia. The oldest written testimony of the presence of coffee in Colombia is attributed to a Jesuit priest, JosÚ Gumilla. In his book The Orinoco Illustrated (1730), he registered the presence of coffee in the mission of Saint Teresa of TabajÚ, near where the Meta river empties into the Orinoco. Further testimony comes from the archbishop-viceroy Caballero y Gongora (1787) who registered the presence of the crop in the north east of the country near Giron (Santander) and Muzo (Boyaca) in a report that he provided to the Spanish authorities.

The first coffee crops were planted in the eastern part of the country. In 1835 the first commercial production was registered with 2,560 green coffee bags that were exported from the port of Cucuta, near the border with Venezuela. A priest named Francisco Romero is attributed to have been very influential in the propagation of the crop in the northeast region of the country. After hearing the confession of the parishioners of the town of Salazar de la Palmas, he required as penance the cultivation of coffee. Coffee became established in the departments of Santander and North Santander, Cundinamarca, Antioquia, and the historic region of Caldas.

Juan Valdez is a fictional character who has appeared in adverts for the National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia since 1958, representing a Colombian coffee farmer. The adverts were designed by the Doyle Dane Bernbach ad agency, with the goal of distinguishing 100%-Colombian coffee from coffee blended with beans from other countries. He typically appears alongside his mule Conchita, carrying sacks of harvested coffee beans. He has become an icon for Colombia as well as coffee.

After our tour it was time to have lunch and get ready to leave for Medellin. This trip for me was incredible and proves to me countries like Colombia are definitely worth going to. There is so much to experience and I have only had this tiny little bit but I know there is much more to discover.

Now we are in Medellin at the Movich Hotel Las Lomas. It is about 30 minutes or so from where our trade show is and 45 minutes to Medellin but very close to the airport.

DSC03270-3309 and DSCF3840-3847