In the years 2018 and 2019, Project Origin helped fund the construction of a new drying facility for our friends at the Tio Juan farm in Honduras. Cristian Rodriguez has three lots all under the banner of the Tio Juan farm: Lot Cristian, Lot Ana, and Lot Rebecca.
The farm’s name means “Uncle Juan” and is named as a tribute to his late brother. The name is also used for the cafés that Cristian owns and runs in Siguatepeuqe, and the use of the guitar in the logo pays tribute to the time Cristian and Juan used to spend playing together. Most of the coffee Cristian grows is used for his cafés, but after meeting Saša, his interest in international sales grew. Saša and Cristian discussed feedback, quality and production, and after realising the coffees on the Tio Juan lots tasted good, the relationship between Cristian and Project Origin began. Initially Cristian used to dry all of his green beans on two drying beds, spreading them out into all the available spaces, or bunching them up when he needed to make room for newer coffees. He favoured the washed process, as this process required the drying space for less time, however Cristian always made one exception: he processed one small lot of natural coffees because his wife loved that flavour the most.
The year Cristian gave Project Origin a sample of his natural lot, our excitement grew and we asked for more. Inevitably, drying space was an issue, as natural processed cherries take twice as long to dry as washed coffees. In 2018 Project Origin helped fund the building of three new drying beds to allow for processing natural and honey coffees. The walls around the drying beds can be raised to bring in more airflow and release excess heat or moisture to compensate for the humid environment. We are excited to continue to share Cristian’s natural and honey lots with coffee roasters and friends.