This month we have the privilege to showcase some exceptional and rare Bolivian microlots. This week was produced by Carmela Aduviri in a remote settlement in the Caranavi province which is the primary region for speciality coffee production in Bolivia with incredibly high altitudes, rich soil and wide ranging temperatures. Typically farms in this region are small with all work done by the farm owners and a few relatives with all belong to the indigenous Aymara people. Carmela has worked in coffee for over 40 years whilst raising her seven children. She now manages the farm with her son Elvis. After selectively picking their top-grade coffee cherries they are taken to be processed in partnership with Agricafe at the Buena Vista wet mill. Production of coffee across Bolivia has unfortunately decreased substantially with a risk of it completely disappearing due to a combination of ageing coffee plantations, the effect of leaf rust and the proliferation of the competing coca industry used to produce cocaine. To try to save the future of coffee production across Bolivia Agricafe aims to build the market for Bolivian specialty coffee by providing producer training programs and building advanced wet and dry mills. They have also started a project called Sol de la Manana (translates as “morning sun”) which shared knowledge and technical assistance to local coffee producers to help them with efficient and modern farming practices. Through the program Carmela has built a vibrant coffee nursery to prune, feed and manage her coffee plantation in order to increase yield. Prior to participating in the program five years ago she was making around $1000 a year from coffee and was forced to illegally grow coca to support her income. Now she is able to make over $20,000 per year just from coffee production. Carmela and her family carefully selected each cherry for this microlot and hand polished each one before delivering them to the wet mill. After the coffee cherries are carefully inspected at the Buena Vista wet mill, they are washed and laid out to dry on raised beds and turned every hour. After about one week they are placed in a unique Coco dryer for further drying.