The variety was created by a consortium including French research institute CIRAD, a regional network of national coffee institutes in Central America (PROMECAFE), and a coffee genebank in Costa Rica (CATIE). F1 hybrids in Central America are part of an effort by breeders to increase the genetic diversity of varieties in the region since the traditional American varieties are severely genetically constricted.
The plant is qualified as “compact” with large beans and a very high yield potential. The cup quality is very good at high altitudes. H1 is resistant to coffee leaf rust (CLR) and tolerant to coffee berry disease (CBD).
Typically, F1 hybrid parents are chosen to be genetically distant from one another; this distance maximizes hybrid vigor, which translates into high yields and overall vigor (for example, tolerance to frost), without losses in cup quality or disease resistance.
Edward “Teddy” Esteve, a first-generation producer, bought the farm in 2004 and completed two total renovations: one in 2006 after hurricane "Stan" and the second one in 2013 after the rust epidemic in the region. The farm is characterized by having a sustainable approach in environmental and social areas, with investments in infrastructure for the benefit of workers.
The great challenge every year to obtain excellent quality coffees is Tapachula’s climate with relative humidity between 85% and 99% in addition to an annual precipitation of 4,500 mm. So much moisture makes cherry drying and fermentation difficult to manage, with a significant risk of bacterial and fungal infection.
Cherries, Tropical Fruit, Peach
This coffee was processed at Chanjul wet mill in Chiapas. Following a sustainable approach focused on quality, the farm produces single-variety micro-lots, such as H1 Centroamericano. A grid pattern of the farm allows each variety to be identified and the characteristics of each coffee to be isolated.
This lot of coffee was processed in the washed method. This means the coffee was mechanically pulped and then fermented in tanks. After the majority of pulp is removed this way, the coffee is traditionally washed with a small amount of water to ensure the coffee is 100% clean. After the washing process, the coffee is sun-dried on raised beds and turned constantly to ensure even drying.
During the harvest, 130 people work on the farm to harvest the cherries, wash the coffee and turn it every hour to avoid any fungal development. In the low season, 30 permanent workers take care of the plantation.
Tapachula, Soconusco, Chiapas
Soconusco is a region in the southwest corner of the state of Chiapas in Mexico along its border with Guatemala. Abundant moisture and volcanic soil have always made it rich for agriculture, contributing to the flowering of the Mokaya and Olmec cultures, that were based on Theobroma cacao and rubber from Castilla elastica.
This area has experienced a boom-and-bust economy with well-studied migration patterns of agricultural workers. After exporting cacao to central Mexico for thousands of years, the first modern crop for export was coffee.
The climate is tropical in Soconusco (rain forest: wet environment). The summers are much rainier than the winters and precipitation here averages 3,800 mm.
New in 2019
The farmer invested in new 2,150 square foot raised beds to increase the production of natural processed coffees in 2020. The goal is to sale 100 small batches of 22 bags each.