2017年7月3日 星期一

直接貿易互助模式:訪談咖啡農

Chalo Fernandez would like to know how you’re enjoying your cold brew on this warm summer day. A fifth-generation coffee farmer who’s turned his family’s farm into a model for sustainability and crop-to-cup partnerships, he frequently travels between Colombia and Canada. Sometimes he even spots his coffees in cafés.
Chalo Fernandez想知道大家喜不喜歡他做的冷萃咖啡,他是咖啡農家族第五代,而且正將家族企業轉型成永續經營、從種子到杯子的合作模式,他很常往返哥倫比亞與加拿大間旅行,有時甚至會在某間咖啡店發現自己種的咖啡。
Yet he doesn’t have to rely on luck to know where his coffee ends up. Direct trade closes the gap between the producer and consumer, increasing interaction between the two. And so he can trace his beans to the very bottles of cold brew hitting Canadian shelves today.
而他不僅止於知道自己的咖啡何去何從,直接貿易消除了生產者與消費者的隔閡,增加彼此的互動性,甚至賣到加拿大商店貨架上的瓶裝冷萃咖啡,他也可以追溯這是他的豆子做的。
Chalo’s Farm cold brew coffee for sale in Canada. Credit: Chalo’s Coffee
在加拿大販售的Chalo的莊園生產的冷萃咖啡,來源:Chalo’s Coffee


An Opportunity for Better Coffee
獲得更好品質咖啡的機會
For over 110 years, Chalo’s family has worked the same land. During tumultuous times, when the coffee trade was causing more hardships than valuable income, his grandfather switched from growing coffee to growing sugar cane. Yet six years ago, Chalo, his brother, two cousins, and his brother-in-law saw an opportunity and so bought the farm from their grandfather.
超過110年的時間,Chalo家族都在這片土地深耕,在這艱難時期,咖啡生豆越來越困難當成有價收入的交易商品,而他的曾祖父改種甘蔗來取代種咖啡。然而六年之前,Chalo的哥哥和兩個表哥、姊夫看到了商機,而從他們祖父手中買下這農地。
Chalo’s son and father sort through beans together. Credit: Chalo’s Coffee
Chalo的兒子跟父親一起篩選咖啡豆,來源:Chalo’s Coffee
That opportunity was the rise in demand for single origin coffee, led by the third wave. Chalo and his family took such pride in producing the quality beans that we crave that they started over completely, planting new coffee trees from seeds. In 2013, they had their first harvest. It was the beginning of partnerships that have now led to friendships, and a grassroots movement that has grown through word-of-mouth and social media exposure alone.
這商機就是來自第三波咖啡風潮對單品咖啡的需求,Chalo和他的家人們全力投入在生產高品質咖啡,也就是完整的從種子開始種植咖啡樹。2013年時他們首次收成,這是作者和Chalo家族友誼的起頭,透過社群媒體的渲染、口碑宣傳而成長。
Chalo’s Instagram account takes all his followers through the processes of farming and trading coffee. Credit: Chalos Coffee
ChaloInstagram帶所有的追蹤者看到種植以及貿易的程序,來源:Chalo’s Coffee

How Direct Trade Connections Begin
直接貿易如何起頭
The Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (Fedecafé), established in 1927, represents over 500,000 coffee-growing families in Colombia. It offers convenience and clarity to its members, who can sell their beans directly to it. And so seeking alternative trade partners takes high levels of aspiration on the part of the producer.
1927年成立的哥倫比亞咖啡種植聯盟,代表了超過50萬戶在哥倫比亞種植咖啡維生的家庭,這機構可以讓身為會員的農民直接方便又清楚的交易咖啡。所以這些農民很渴望尋求可替代的貿易夥伴。
For Chalo and his family, this aspiration came from experiencing craft coffee in Australia and Canada. It motivated them to take their beans to a similar level, and so they set out to market themselves to a different type of consumer. At present, Chalo sells some beans direct trade; the rest goes to Fedecafé. Yet he hopes to be exclusively direct trade soon.
Chalo和他的家人,渴望尋找在澳洲和加拿大對咖啡很有技術的人,這促使他們將豆子等級推至相同層級,所以他們可以透過夥伴將咖啡銷售給不同類型的消費者。現在Chalo直接銷售一部分的咖啡,其餘則銷給Fedecafe,而未來他期待完全以直接貿易來銷售他的咖啡。
Chalo and his wife Diana (who is Canadian) started cold calling and visiting roasters to share both their beans and their story. Not just any roaster would do: they were discerning in their choices, seeking out only those who shared their devotion to coffee and sustainability.
Chalo和他的加拿大籍太太Diana會電訪及親訪潛在的烘豆師,分享他們的咖啡豆以及他們的故事,而他們不是隨便選擇,他們只選擇會分享他們咖啡故事及永續理念的人。
Making the Right Connections
跟對的人結識
One cold call led to Chalo and Diana meeting Tim Trebilcock, a coffee roaster near Toronto, Canada. “The minute he walked in the door, we were friends,” Tim recalls. He was so fond of Chalo’s family, story, and – of course – coffee, that he started introducing him to nearby cafés and roasters. And as time went on, they also began to buy his beans.
某次電訪讓ChaloDiana結識了加拿大多倫多的烘豆師Tim TrebilcockTim說:「當他踏進門的那刻我們就成了朋友」,Tim相當喜歡Chalo的家族、故事以及他們的咖啡,而他開始向周圍的咖啡店和烘豆師推薦他們,一段時間後,這些店家也開始買Chalo的豆子了。
Tim, along with his brother and father, started roasting beans in their kitchen over a decade ago.  Today, they have a successful roasting operation which ships beans across Canada and beyond. It’s relationships like the one he has established with Chalo and his family, however, that motivate and drive him today. “Having dinner in their homes, that’s where the passion comes from,” he says. “This is a business about people.”
Tim跟他的兄弟和父親十年前開始在自家廚房烘豆。現在,他們有良好的烘焙程序,可以將咖啡運送到加拿大各地。然而,跟Chalo和他的家族這樣的關係才是驅使Tim工作的原動力。「在他們家共進晚餐,感受滿滿的熱情,這是一門跟人互動的生意」。
Chalo also met Alfonso Tupaz, CEO of Hatch Coffee, through a cold call. At the time, Hatch Coffee was finishing up building their cold brew factory. After meeting with Chalo and tasting his beans, they decided to make him one of several farmers they partner with.
Chalo也電訪了Hatch CoffeeCEO Alfonso Tupaz,當時Hatch Coffee剛蓋好他們製造冷萃咖啡的工廠,在跟Chalo會面並品嚐他們的咖啡豆後,他們決定將Chalo納入合作的咖啡農之一。
Hatch Coffee goes through great measures to ensure their cold brew coffee reaches its highest potential: small roast batches, optimal maturation times specific to the particular beans, precise grinding, brewing in small batches at controlled temperatures for extended times, and finally double filtering prior to bottling. They’re just the kind of dedicated coffee roaster that Chalo wanted to do business with.
Hatch Coffee確認冷萃咖啡製作的程序都有達到最高水準:小批量烘焙、針對特定咖啡豆的養豆時間、精確的研磨、在可控制的溫度下小批沖泡咖啡,最後再裝瓶前兩次過濾咖啡液。他們就是Chalo想要做生意的那種咖啡商。
Tim Trebilcock (front left) and other artisan roasters during a site visit on Chalo’s farm. Credit: Chalo’s Coffee
Tim Trebilcock(左前一)和他的烘豆師拜訪Chalo的莊園,來源:Chalo’s Coffee
Direct Trade Is a Two-Way Street
直接貿易是互助的模式
Chalo and Diana believe in being both innovative and eco-friendly. They run the only wet mill in the region, which they also let other farmers use, and they have empowered themselves with sustainable equipment and applications. This dedication to the environment and the community is possible because of direct trade; it’s also what, in turn, leads artisan roasters to choose Chalo’s coffee.
ChaloDiana秉持著創新和環境友善的信念,在產區他們是唯一的水洗處理廠,而他們也讓其他農民使用,他們也用永續能源來驅動設備。因為直接貿易的關係,讓對環境以及對社區關懷的奉獻變得可能,這也讓好的頂尖烘豆師選擇他們的咖啡。
For Alfonso Tupaz, direct trade means having a partnership rather than a business transaction. The practices that he has refined through his business experiences are also applicable to Chalo’s farm. And so on a recent origin visit, he and some other roasters started establishing plans with Chalo to help streamline some of his operations. By sharing their knowledge, they are improving the trade at every part of the process.
Alfonso Tupaz來說,直接貿易更像是夥伴關係而非生意來往,他的生意經驗也可應用在Chalo的莊園。而最近一次到產地的拜訪,一些烘豆師開始幫助Chalo建立簡化作業程序的計畫,透過分享見聞,他們正在改善貿易的每個流程。
Tim Trebilcock, for example, has a mechanical background and so helps Chalo with preventative maintenance plans. During visits, he hosts workshops on equipment maintenance and repair for Chalo and neighboring farms. He’s brought down refractometers and moisture meters, the former to measure the sugar level in coffee cherries and so test ripeness, the latter to ensure the beans aren’t over-drying or too wet.
例如,Tim Trebilcock有機械的背景,這樣可以幫助Chalo進行預防性的維護計畫。當Tim拜訪Chalo時他就為Chalo以及他的鄰居們開講座,教他們進行設備維護以及維修。他帶了所有折射器和水份偵測儀,前者用於偵測咖啡果實的糖份含量,後者用來檢查生豆是否乾燥過度或水份含量太高。
Chalo的爸爸Alberto正在使用折射器來測量咖啡果實糖分含量,來源:Chalo’s Coffee

What else comes full circle on Chalo’s farm? Seeing the reaction of his team as they are able to sample those products that were made with the beans they harvested. “It is important to remember we are coffee producers, most of us not consumers, so we know how to grow coffee but not how to prepare and drink coffee,” Chalo explains.
Chalo的莊園還有什麼?他們可以很專業的將自己種植的咖啡豆,做出精準的養本豆。Chalo說:「要記得自己的角色是咖啡生產者這一點很重要,我們大部分的人並非消費者,所以我們只知道如何種植咖啡,但對於咖啡的備製與沖煮知之有限」
When tasting Hatch Coffee’s cold brew (and in particular the batch named “Chalo’s Farm”), his team couldn’t believe that people drink coffee cold – or what a delicious flavor it could have. There was also great astonishment at the fact that 5 Paddles Brewing in Canada use Chalo’s beans to make a stout beer.
當品嚐Hatch Coffee的冷萃咖啡(特別是Chalo生產的批次),Chalo團隊的人不敢相信竟然有人喝冷咖啡-或是這種咖啡會有多好喝。加拿大的5Paddles Brewing甚至以他們的咖啡釀製濃烈的啤酒。
Chalo的團隊在哥倫比亞試喝他們咖啡做成的濃烈的啤酒,來源:Chalo’s Coffee
During another visit, Tim Trebilcock brought in beans that were roasted on the Saturday to be sampled on the farm on the Monday. The reactions of Chalo’s team and other local farmers brought him to tears.
另一次的拜訪時,Tim Trebilcock在周一帶了一批前一個週六烘焙的樣本豆,而Chalo的團隊跟其他當地農夫的反應讓他非常感動。

Direct Trade Has Its Own Challenges
直接貿易也有其挑戰之處
With direct trade, farmers can potentially sell their beans for much more than they can by going through a commodity market. However, with these successes there also come tribulations. Chalo and other farmers like him incur the responsibility of getting the beans to the roasters without the support of a federation or a professional coffee importer. Establishing the necessary relationships with roasters isn’t easy. What’s more, logistics can also be a challenge. The first major shipment Chalo sent to Canada came through the United States and had to clear US customs, a time-consuming and costly process – especially when it ends up incurring demurrage fees. To offset any potential calamities, Chalo packages his beans in GrainPro bags so that moisture won’t affect the green beans. They have also vastly refined their logistics procedures since reestablishing their farm. Yet it was an expensive lesson to learn.
透過直接貿易,農民銷售的利潤比直接賣到期貨市場來得高許多,然而雖然有成功案例,當中還是有許多難處。Chalo和其他像他這樣的咖啡農,在沒有聯盟或專業咖啡進口商的支持下,承擔著把豆子烘焙的風險。 與烘豆師建立必要的關係並不容易。

此外,物流運輸也是挑戰,第一批Chalo運到加拿大的貨品,經過美國還必須清關,這是一個時間及金錢成本的耗損,特別當他們必須支付倉管費時。為了消除任何潛在問題,Chalo將咖啡生豆以真空袋方式包裝,這樣咖啡生豆不會因為潮濕而影響品質,自從重建咖啡莊園後他們也大大改善物流作業程序,然而,這對他們來說是學費昂貴的一課。
Chalo驕傲的展示第一批銷往加拿大的咖啡,來源:Chalo’s Coffee
Mother nature can also cause difficulties. Since moisture is a major factor in growing coffee, drought and high humidity can greatly affect the output of coffee cherries on a tree. Chalo’s farm is 25 hectares; one hectare is approximately the size of a soccer pitch and contains about 5,000 trees. In a perfect year, each tree would produce about a kilo of coffee. But Chalo and his family have yet to experience a full yield. The new farm is still young, and so Chalo stays positive, motivates his team, and works hard to achieve that full yield.
大自然也會帶來困難,當濕度是種植咖啡主要影響因素之一時,乾旱以及高濕度會大大影響咖啡樹上的果實。Chalo的莊園是25公頃,而一公頃大約就是一個足球場的大小,一公頃也可以種約5000棵咖啡樹。在好的收成年,每棵樹可以收成約一公斤的咖啡果實。Chalo和他的家人並沒有經歷這種好的收成,新莊園還仍待努力,而Chalo保持樂觀並激勵他的團隊,努力達成好收成的目標。

Chalo(圖右)跟農民夥伴合照,來源:Chalo’s Coffee

With the support of roasters like Alfonso and Tim, Chalo and his family continue to hone their practices and grow their equipment inventory. This allows them to keep producing the excellent coffee that boosts both their farm and region. And as they make improvements and work towards long-term relationships with artisan roasters, they’re also increasing their exports which in turn brings us consumers better coffee.
來自像是AlfonsoTim這樣的烘豆師的支持,Chalo和他的家人持續改善他們生產技術和設備升級,這使他們能夠繼續產出優質咖啡,促進莊園和社區的發展。隨著他們不斷進步以及跟烘豆師長期的夥伴關係,他們持續增加咖啡的出口量,也為消費者生產出更高品質的咖啡。
It’s not easy, but progress is visible. And as Chalo says, “We are very dedicated to producing the perfect cup – this is a lifetime goal.”
這並不容易,但結果是顯而易見的。Chalo說:「我們致力於產出一杯好咖啡,而這是我們一生心之所向」。

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