From wsj.com Fleeing Venezuela’s economic collapse, many are taking jobs
Growing up in the fifth generation of a Colombian coffee-growing family, Maria Jose Palacio knew just how unstable that life could be. Farmers’ incomes swing wildly because of fluctuations in international coffee prices, and they often lose money on their crops.
Prices of coffee, this year’s worst-performing major agricultural commodity, may get a boost from La Nina as the weather phenomenon threatens Brazil’s next crop.
Up to 45 producers and 56 types of speciality-grade coffee from 12 countries will join the first “Singapore Virtual (Micro Lot) Specialty Coffee Auction” on Thursday from 2pm to 4pm Bangkok time.
Jose Manuel Mancilla was taking a break from his job at a local gold mine. So on Sunday he gathered with friends at a hillside home in his village of Munchique, where about 20 people were drinking and staging cockfights.
Owner Marta Vidal and her husband, Heber are giving back to the South American community they call home. As immigrants from Colombia, they have seen the challenges that the country’s coffee harvesters face firsthand.
Over the past decade, the value of the global coffee industry has almost doubled to $90 billion. More than 2 billion cups of coffee are currently consumed worldwide each day and the market is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 5.32% between 2020 and 2024. Younger generations in particular, are driving demand for high-quality coffee, and willing to spend more money on unique and premium coffee experiences.
The 62-year-old Patiño claims to drink up to 15 cups of Salento coffee a day, but only in its purest, most potent form. His first taste came on his grandfather’s farm at the age of 10, served up with a dose of sweet agua panela, or boiled sugarcane juice.
Six students from the Universidad de La Sabana in Colombia and their advisors have partnered with Purdue University researchers to raise awareness of the various threats facing Colombian coffee farmers – from climate change to poverty and the disinterest of young people toward remaining in rural areas.
Covid-19 is making coffee growing unprofitable for Adan Rojas. Like thousands of small Colombian farmers, the pandemic forced him to use out-of-work locals to harvest his beans as travel restrictions kept out experienced seasonal pickers.