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How Much Do Green Coffee Beans Cost? And How Are They Priced?

Green Coffee Beans Colombia

Here in Colombia, where Those Coffee People is based, coffee farmers are in the midst of a remarkably profitable era of coffee production. 

Since the value of the Colombian peso against the dollar dropped at the start of the pandemic, coffee beans have increased in price and their value continues to soar to this day. 

Recent civil unrest in Colombia caused by anti-government protests has also prompted a record-high spike in coffee prices, despite supply problems due to roadblocks across the country. 

Given the peak of the latest coffee harvest season is currently taking place, this could push coffee prices even further over the threshold.

And the irony is that before the country’s National Coffee Growers Committee (FNC) introduced a stabilization fund in 2019, coffee prices had been notoriously low for years, forcing many smallholder coffee farmers to operate at a loss. 

So, if you’ve found yourself Googling “how much are green coffee beans?” stop what you’re doing, and let us walk you through exactly how to budget for buying them from Colombia in 2021.

What is the Price of Green Coffee?

In Colombia, the FNC is in charge of selling the majority of commercial coffee crops, and it sets the price of coffee “per carga.” This term is used to refer to 125kg of parchment, pre-dry mill, presuming the coffee is in perfect condition. 

While the per carga green coffee price fluctuates in line with the market, at the time of writing, it currently stands at $1.470.000 Colombian pesos (approximately $400 USD).

To calculate the standard raw coffee price per kg, you can use the FNC per carga price, divide by 125 to get the per kilo parchment price, multiply by the factor (for which you can generally use 92-96), and then divide by 70 to calculate the price per kilo, in green coffee beans. 

However, these prices are just for standard coffee if you were a co-op buying directly from producers in towns, not providing any bonuses for the quality of coffee. 

For our group two coffees — which score 83 or above according to the Specialty Coffee Association scoring guidelines — we always pay coffee producers a margin of between 10-30% on top of the per carga price. And this is all before any operational costs, transportation, transformation or profits. 

For our group three or four high-scoring, specialty coffees, their prices are based on quotes we obtain from producers. Producers calculate these prices by factoring in operational costs, and the costs of research and development (more advanced coffee processes require many experiments to perfect).

What Do Prices Include?

Coffee grower cooperatives cover, at these prices, all costs related to the coffee collection service to producers. These include:

  • Production
  • Harvesting
  • Some transportation to a place of purchase in certain situations. 

Other Fees

These prices do not include the costs of:

  • Domestic transportation
  • Logistics costs
  • Milling
  • Packaging
  • Quality Control
  • Operational expenses
  • Banking fees
  • Export taxes 
  • International shipping costs

Domestic Transportation and Logistics Costs

Up until the 1990s — and in some parts of the country to this day — Colombia was famous for its complex road infrastructure and lack of connectivity between isolated regions. 

Complex geography including mountains, jungles, and deserts, as well as decades of armed conflict, has also made improving road conditions difficult in Colombia. 

For this reason, roads in Colombia are still susceptible to closures due to geographic phenomena such as landslides, as well as blockades during moments of political tension such as social protest.

With such a long list of factors that could delay, complicate, or prevent delivery, domestic transportation of green coffee beans and the logistics costs that come with it in Colombia are often expensive. 

In addition to this, other logistics costs including port fees are also surprisingly costly in Colombia. All of these factors must be considered when preparing a budget. 

Milling

At the milling stage of coffee bean processing, it’s possible that you could come across some surprise defects in the beans, which means they will have to be removed from the load. And when they’re removed, the total weight of the coffee beans will decrease.

Bear in mind that the per kilo price for coffee has already been counted based on the assumption that the coffee beans were perfect, so a reduction in bean weight could mean additional financial cost. We must prepare for this risk and assume the costs. 

Packaging 

The cost of packaging green coffee beans is also one not to be overlooked. Packaging green coffee beans in a printed sack with a grain pro bag for extra protection against damage could cost up to approximately $6 per sack, on top of the price of coffee beans themselves.

Although this price can vary depending on the exchange rate and the brand of the bag, it can be a hefty extra cost to assume per kilo of coffee. 

For example, if the sack of coffee holds 35kg of beans, these extra costs can amount to an extra $0.17 per kilo of coffee, just on the packaging!

Quality Control 

The price of quality control is another added extra that coffee suppliers must assume. For example, here at Those Coffee People, we hire a team of trained experts who spend their time analyzing each lot of coffee to ensure our customers get the exact product they’re expecting.

As any cafe owner will know: employing highly trained and qualified staff is both challenging and expensive to maintain, and you can expect that your suppliers will add this extra cost into their per kilo coffee price. 

Banking Fees

When it comes to banking fees, coffee suppliers in Colombia must also factor in the 4/1000 financial transactions tax for sending transactions, which is equivalent to .004% of the price of all transactions.

Don’t be fooled … this tax can end up being very expensive! Think about, for example, paying an invoice worth U.S. $50,000 to your producer, you could end up having to pay $200 in taxes just to send the money.

Another point to remember is that you’ll only be able to claim 50% of this tax as deductible expenses when it comes to paying income taxes. And because of corporate taxes, you’ll have to pay 32% of that 50%, which means even less can be deducted. All of these considerations are factored into the price of coffee.

Export Taxes

In order to export coffee from Colombia, you must register as an exporter with the FNC and obtain an exporting license. 

Your Colombian coffee exporter should be able to clearly explain how much you have to pay in export taxes. In 2021, the contribuciĂłn-cafetera tax charged by the FNC is $0.06 USD per pound of green coffee, or $0.13 per kilo, so a multiple of this amount will be included for each kilo you purchase. 

International Shipping Costs

Budgeting for the logistics and coffee transportation costs involved in purchasing coffee beans is incredibly important, as — believe it or not — these additional expenses can sometimes add up to the equivalent of the coffee itself!

According to The International Chamber of Commerce, there are Commercial Terms (Incoterms) for international trade which stipulate that:

  • A price for goods that does not include shipping costs can be known as Ex Works (EXW).
  • A price for goods that includes only the cost of boarding the goods onto the ship, but not the freight costs, is referred to as Free on Board (FOB).
  • When the seller includes transportation costs and brings the goods to a designated place of the buyer’s choosing, this is known as Delivered at Place (DAP).

Shipping Models

At Those Coffee People, we export four different types of coffee shipments. These are:

  • Courier: Courier providers include FedEx, DHL, UPS, Deprisa, Servientrega, and TNT. Charges vary depending on which provider you choose but you can expect to pay between $5-10 per kilo of shipping charges on a 50 kilo shipment.
  • Air Freight: The fixed costs of exporting via air freight for the majority of our clients are $465. These include documentation, transport from farm to airport, airport fees and customs charges, logistics company handling charges. On top of these, you can expect to pay anywhere between $2-4 USD per kilo in air freight charges. 
  • Sea Freight: Sea freight is divided up into two categories: less than container load shipments (LCL), and full container load shipments (FCL). For an FCL sea shipment with documentation, transport from farm to port, port charges and fees and customs charges, logistics company handling charges (freight and insurance), you can expect to pay between $3000-$4000 per container to ship to almost anywhere in the world in the FCL model. 

Payment and Invoicing Norms

Colombian coffee exporters usually tend to be paid in U.S. dollars, generally via wire transfer. 

Quotes can vary according to the exchange rate of the Colombian peso against the dollar, so this is important to bear in mind when considering quote expiration dates.

If the exchange rate is favorable like it is at the moment, it can pay to complete the purchase quickly while a quote is valid, rather than spending time shopping around.

Closing Thoughts

To sum things up, as you can tell, there are many factors that contribute to the price of green coffee beans when you buy them from origin. 

In fact, the actual price of coffee per carga can sometimes be cheaper than the value of all of the extra costs we’ve mentioned. And all of this is before profits are even added!

Being a green coffee supplier means assuming small margins, hard work, and high risk. So next time you buy a bag of specialty coffee, you’ll know that while the price you’re paying might be slightly more expensive, the coffee will be worth every penny! 

Here at Those Coffee People, our mission is to make wholesale coffee exports as easy as possible, so we’ll take charge of calculating all the costs for you and then breaking them down.


Are you looking for the perfect Colombian coffee beans? Contact us for a quote today.

The Complete Guide to Importing Green Coffee in UAE

Dubai, UAE

While the United Arab Emirates may be famous for its towering skyscrapers, desert safaris, and Grand Mosque, the country’s coffee market is also growing at an astonishing rate.

In 2019, the UAE government invested the equivalent of almost $35 million in building a Dubai Multi Commodities Center (DMCC) for coffee to attract suppliers from overseas and establish new coffee trade routes. 

Last year, it was announced that the Coffee DMCC would be tripling its trading capacity in response to an increased demand for specialty coffee in the Middle East. 

As a result, the UAE is now a major player in the global coffee supply chain. So, if you’ve found yourself Googling “where can I buy green coffee in Dubai?” The answer is: you’re now going to be spoiled for options.

The region’s coffee culture is now a fusion of rich coffee traditions merged together with Western coffee influences. 

Arabic coffee, for example, uses deeply roasted beans mixed together with cardamom and saffron and is served in a long-spouted jug called a Dallah. In cities such as Dubai, however, these traditions are juxtaposed with Western coffee chains such as Starbucks, Costa Coffee, and Dunkin’ Donuts, which arrived there in the 1990s.

Either way, the UAE is a great country to import green coffee beans to, and we’re here to share our expertise with you on how it’s done.

How to Find a Supplier

If you’re looking for a supplier to help you import green coffee beans into the UAE, the most important things to ensure they are aware of are the country’s rules and regulations surrounding coffee imports. 

This knowledge is especially important in the UAE, a country home to 45 “free zones,” or areas where goods (in this case, coffee) can be traded with preferential tax and customs rates. 

When it comes to suppliers, if you’re after one that’s already on the ground in the UAE, a good place to start looking would be to identify suppliers with links to the DMCC and go from there. If you’re looking for suppliers at origin in Colombia, however, make sure you track down ones that are familiar with the local requirements and practices. 

Looking for coffee bean importers to the UAE? We’re experts at sourcing and shipping green coffee to UAE buyers. Explore our range of Colombian green coffee beans here. 

Arranging Shipping

When shipping coffee beans, the first thing you’ll need to decide upon is the method you’re going to use to ship them. Here at Those Coffee People, we export four different types of coffee shipments to the UAE. These include: 

  • Less than container load (LCL) shipments
  • Full container load (FCL) shipments
  • Air freight
  • Courier

According to UAE import guidelines, before making any shipment to the country, you must make sure to obtain the correct trade license from the Department of Economic Development of the Emirate. 

You can apply to obtain a trade license, renew it, and manage it here

Overseas coffee companies may also set up an office in the UAE free zones which means they can use a free zone trade license to import coffee into the country. 

The good news is that Dubai’s main free zone port Jebel Ali, which is also the largest port in the Middle East, is one of the busiest ports in the world. This means it’s accessible on many shipping lines and routes from all corners of the globe, so you shouldn’t have any trouble arranging a direct route for your coffee shipment. 

Shipping Costs 

The price of your coffee bean shipment to the UAE will vary according to where you are exporting from and which provider you choose to use, as well as the Intercom terms you negotiate with them. 

One tip when it comes to estimating shipping costs is not to underestimate the extra charges and export costs charged by the country you are shipping from, which can make the overall shipping costs much more expensive.

For an FCL shipment from Colombia to Dubai, you can expect to pay between $3,600 and $4,000. This will include national (Colombian) freight from the coffee farms to the port, origin port fees and taxes, export costs, documentation, international freight, and insurances. 

Air freight from Bogotá can cost between $3-4 per kilogram, but keep in mind you’ll also need to pay $300-$500 in fixed costs for national freight exports from the coffee farms to the port, origin port fees and taxes, export costs, documentation for exports made by air.

UAE Coffee Imports Labeling Requirements

Although in the past the UAE has accepted labels in English, according to food labeling requirements from the Abu Dhabi Food and Safety Authority, they must now be all in Arabic. If the original label is in Arabic, a copy translated into English and attached to the original is also permitted.

With green coffee bean shipments into the UAE, your shipment label should contain the following information: 

  1. Name of the product and its grade
  2. Name of the species
  3. Net contents 
  4. Name and address of manufacturer/ packer/ distributor/ importer/ exporter/ vendor
  5. Production date
  6. Expiration date
  7. Country of origin

Customs Clearance and Declarations for Green Coffee In UAE

When importing green coffee beans into the UAE, you must also obtain some other importing documents beforehand in order to clear customs. 

If you’re importing into a free zone, these include: 

  • A product photo of the front and back of your shipment — ensure your supplier takes these photos before sending the shipment in order to register it.
  • Delivery order from the shipping/ airline agent addressed to the licensed company by the licensing management in the free zone.
  • Second copies of the bill of lading (for sea shipments), the original airway bill (for air shipments), or a road manifest (for land shipments).
  • Original health/ phytosanitary certificate.
  • Detailed packing list.
  • Certificate of origin.
  • Bill of entry issued by local customs.
  • Import permit from the agencies in the free zone for restricted goods.
  • Import goods declaration form.

If you decide to import green coffee beans into an area of the UAE that’s not a free zone, then hiring a licensed customs broker is a good idea. A broker can help you apply for permits and help you meet all the government requirements for your coffee import.

Coffee Import Customs Duties into UAE

According to the UAE imports and exports guide, free zone licensees are exempt from customs duties payments in the UAE. 

If you’re importing to mainland UAE (non free zones), however, you’ll need to pay a deposit and a customs duty of 5% of the shipment’s value. 

Look Out For Sales Tax on Green Coffee in UAE

One thing to bear in mind when researching where to buy green coffee in Dubai is that the standard VAT tax rate on coffee in the UAE is 5% of its sales value.

Discover our Range of Direct Trade Coffee Beans 

Here at Those Coffee People, we’re experts in sourcing and supplying the finest direct trade Colombian green coffee beans. We venture off into remote areas of Colombia’s beautiful coffee regions to search for new and exclusive varieties, exploring the country town by town to identify the most unique and desirable origins for you and your customers.

Explore our unique Colombian coffee origins here and discover the story of every estate we work with. We can fulfill and deliver orders of any size for buyers in the UAE: contact us for more information.

If you’re looking to import coffee into the GCC, have a read of these importation guides:


A Buyer’s Guide to Special Processed Green Coffee

Green Coffee

Over the last decade, the coffee industry has evolved. Speciality coffee businesses that have opened up since the turn of the millennium are now in the throes of their “third wave” — a time to enjoy higher quality coffee and experiment with innovative processing methods. 

Coffee beans that once would have been considered faulty or defective have now become bestsellers. Furthermore, new processes such as extended fermentations, carbonic maceration, naturals, honeys, and frozen coffee are challenging the market standards. As a result, the guidelines for evaluating green coffee beans must be updated. 

Currently, the standard rules for grading green coffee are limited and outdated: they apply only to washed coffee. However, this is just one coffee processing method. The traditional, widely accepted protocol doesn’t work for processed beans.

So, we’re here to tell you what to look for when buying green coffee beans. Well, more accurately, how to buy raw coffee beans and what to keep an eye out for when you’re buying special processed green coffee that hasn’t been washed and explain why this, in turn, could boost your own coffee business.

What are the Different Green Coffee Processing Methods?

Raw, unroasted coffee can be processed in a variety of ways, including: 

  • Washed: the most common processing method in places like Colombia where coffee farmers don’t have to worry about water shortages is a process called washing. This is where the beans are removed from the cherries and are then washed to remove the mucilage or “honey” that is around the bean.  
  • Natural: also known as the dry process, naturally processed coffee is where the beans are left with the fruit on them to dry undisturbed. This is the most eco-friendly way to process green coffee and common in countries where water scarcity is more prevalent. In countries like Colombia, this process can take months due to cooler temperatures and proximity of harvest seasons to rainy seasons
  • Honey: this way of processing produces a uniquely sweet profile that is distinctly found in the flavor of the cup. Honey processed coffee is when coffee cherries are harvested, the cherries and depulped, but then they are dried with the mucilage, or honey, still on the bean.
  • Anaerobic fermentation: anaerobic fermentation is when coffee is processed in a sealed tank that deprives the beans of oxygen. The remaining oxygen and carbon dioxide are released using valves. This forces the juices and sugar into the bean and can produce exotic flavors as a result.
  • Carbonic maceration: this process has been adapted from wine-making and applied to coffee. Whole coffee cherries are left to ferment in a sealed tank pumped full with carbon-dioxide.
  • Frozen: in the past, coffee farmers used to freeze whole coffee cherries to prevent the fermentation process from starting. However, when whole coffee cherries are frozen they actually continue to ferment, producing great flavored coffee.

Processing Green Coffee Sorting: What You Need to Know

In our experience, standard best practices for green coffee sorting can lead to you discarding some of the best, most flavorful coffee beans!

Instead of identifying defective coffee beans and discarding them right away, coffee buyers should aim to see the nuances in the sorting process. 

For instance, colors and natural occurrences that would normally suggest beans are faulty don’t necessarily mean they should be discarded from the get-go. 

Regular green coffee beans

First, here’s a control sample for you to get a feel for the color of regular green coffee beans.

As these beans are processed in different ways, some of them might change color. Some will likely be defective, but not all of them. Others could appear defective, but instead taste far from it. In fact, these will be the beans giving the coffee its most powerful flavor. Here are some examples:

Sour Beans

Sour beans, which have a brown to light brown discoloration, will likely add acidic taste to the coffee cup. However, not all beans that follow these color characteristics are actually sour. 

Fermented coffee beans

Here is a photo of fermented green coffee beans that have undergone an extended anaerobic fermentation protocol. 

As you can see, among the green beans there are some brown-looking beans that appear to be sour.

However, after scratching off the outer surface of some of the brown coffee beans, many are in fact a vibrant green color underneath. 

If you’re ever in doubt, don’t discard these beans. Cup them to assess whether they are actually sour or not.

Frost-Damaged Beans

Beans damaged by frost tend to appear pale or anaemic, which means they can sometimes lack strong flavor or aroma.

However, this color change doesn’t necessarily mean your coffee beans will taste bad. Try not to discard these as defective based on their appearance, and wait until you taste them instead to see if they are the result of the process.

Black Beans

Black coffee beans

In this photo, some of the coffee beans have darkened so much that they appear to be black. 

Some of the easiest defective beans to spot, black coffee beans tend to have a sour taste. 

However, while some coffee beans appear to have a black exterior, you’ll often find that scraping them with your fingernail will reveal a green bean underneath. These beans are not defective and should be cupped to see what they taste like. They could turn out to be some of the best!

Like with all processes, there are also inevitable, unavoidable hiccups which could happen but won’t necessarily affect your whole bean batch if you don’t take them out. Here are a few: 

Broken Beans

When it comes to broken beans, traditional guidelines indicate that they have been damaged by machinery so should therefore be discarded. 

However, when milling natural coffee, beans can break often, as the machinery tends to be stronger and will treat them less delicately. Ultimately, these broken beans will roast differently to the rest of the batch. 

If your batch is small, however, having a few broken beans doesn’t mean all of them should be discarded. Broken beans can easily be picked out.

Husks

Too many pieces of husk in your batch of green coffee could give it an earthy taste or cause a fire risk when roasting.  However, if there are only a few husks in your batch of beans, don’t disqualify your batch. See if you can pick them out.

Remember, coffee is an agricultural product! It comes from farms which are a rustic environment, home to animals and wildlife. Think of it like finding some dirt in your salad leaves. Would you throw away the whole lettuce? Or would you just wash the dirt off and carry on?

Parchment 

Finding your beans encased in parchment can reduce the intensity of their flavor. However, just as with husks, this often happens. Again, if your batch is small, see if you can pick out the parchment-encased beans by hand, as opposed to disposing of your whole batch. 

Foreign Matter

Remember, coffee is harvested and processed on farms, so bits of foreign matter can often find themselves into your batch of beans.

If left in the batch, pieces of foreign matter could damage the machines you use to roast your beans, but they’re unlikely to affect their flavor. Any foreign matter that arrives in your coffee should be reported to your supplier with as much detail as possible (which sack, photos of the foreign matter) so they can best try to identify why it arrived there and how to avoid it in the future. 

Green Coffee Bean Defects: The Ones You Can’t Ignore

All that considered, there are some defects that will always be bad for your batch of beans.

Furthermore, most of them are unavoidable, If you encounter any of these, you’ll need to discard them no matter what:

  • Mouldy beans
  • Insect-damaged beans: in Colombia we call these brocca
  • Fungal damage
  • Shells
  • Floating beans
  • Immature beans
  • Withered beans
  • Crystallized/ blue beans

What Can We Learn From This? 

If there’s a moral to this story, then we believe it’s to trust your instincts. In order to sort processed coffee beans, we believe that checking their visual quality is necessary. However, it’s more important to judge the beans quality based on how they smell and taste.

The standard guidelines for the green coffee bean extraction process were created for a reason, and in some cases they do still apply. But not in all cases. 

The truth is, when it comes to processed beans it really is difficult to regiment a protocol to score them, because the practice is simply too subjective. And coffee farmers are making the most of this.

By creating their own rules and experimenting with new processes, farmers are introducing nutty, floral, herbal and even spices into their coffee blends. Some are even fermenting coffee beans with organic materials, or increasing alcoholic notes and intense chocolate tastes into their coffee, which is growing in popularity. 

Because of the lack of guidelines for sorting processed coffee, farmers are going one step further. Is pineapple-flavored coffee too far away from the roots of green coffee to be considered natural anymore? And if not, what’s the limit? Can processed coffee ever become too artificial?

Case Study: La Ventolera Farm, Colombia

Coffee farmer

Meet Felipe, a coffee farmer from Santa Bárbara, Antioquia, Colombia. During one coffee harvest, Felipe realized that he didn’t have enough space in his African drying beds to ferment and dry his harvest during the highest peaks of the harvest. 

So, he decided to freeze the coffee cherries in order to pause the fermentation until he had space available in the african beds.

However, unbeknownst to him, another fermentation process had begun during the freezing stage. This affected the color of the green coffee beans after he had dried them. 

After they had been dried, some of the beans became sour. Others turned black and red — normally signs of beans that should be discarded according to standard sorting guidelines. 

Coffee cherries

However, trusting his processing skills and accepting that the batch was never going to be perfect, Felipe found a way to sort these beans that allowed him to control the real defects. 

As a result, he implemented his own sorting protocols in the dry mill to accurately produce a quality product, harvest new flavors of coffee, reduce waste, and put more emphasis on the cupping process.

Had he abided by industry standards, his final product would never have existed. And had his customers sorted his coffee based on industry standards, no one would have been able to enjoy this innovative process.

Closing Thoughts 

The market is still getting used to a level of experimental disruption that is challenging the definition of coffee in many ways.

This experimental boom may create some confusion in the trade market around the difference between a defect and an attribute in coffee beans. And this confusion could be reflected in the way professional cuppers score coffee when they taste it.

As a result, many coffee farmers have stopped promising specific physical qualities in their coffee, and instead, they offer a “profile” of what the coffee should have.

Green coffee sorting is simply too subjective for a protocol, or a system. 

As experienced green coffee suppliers, we believe that checking the visual quality of the beans is necessary. But sometimes, judging them by their physical appearance can mean missing out on some of the tastiest coffee around. 

Defects exist, but at the end of the day, what’s more important is the sensorial experience which allows you to smell, taste, and understand the product as it’s presented to the customer. This requires good skills in cupping, roasting and preparing the coffee itself. 

Wondering where to buy green coffee beans? Look no further. Take a look at our range of Colombian green coffee beans and pick up a sample package of extraordinary coffee today.

A Guide to Importing Coffee Beans to Australia

Australian flag

Australia’s coffee culture dates back way before the millennial-filled, hipster cafes that line the streets of Sydney, Melbourne, and other cities today. In fact, its origins are associated with a wave of Italian migration that took place after the Second World War. Italian migrants brought with them the newly-invented steam-powered espresso machine, and with it, elements of the European cafĂ© culture, which would then translate into the relaxed way of life down under. 

With coffee already deeply ingrained into the country’s culture, Australian baristas got to work trialing new styles of coffee. In the 1980s they invented the flat white, a beverage now widely enjoyed across Europe and in the U.S. 

Despite cultivating a small volume of specialty coffee, Australia is among the world’s top 15 coffee importers, importing almost $450 million of coffee beans in 2019. So if you’re looking to join those importing green coffee beans into Australia, keep reading, because we’ve got you covered. 

Finding a Supplier

Just as you would when importing into any foreign country, make sure you track down a supplier that knows the Australian importation rules and regulations well. Don’t forget to ask the necessary questions to assess the extent of their knowledge. 

Even if you do find a supplier that knows the market well, it’s a good idea for them to hire a licensed customs broker. A list of Australia’s licensed customs brokers can be found here.  

Looking for coffee bean importers to Australia? We’re experts at sourcing and shipping green coffee to Australian buyers. Explore our range of green coffee here.  

Arranging Shipping

When thinking about importing coffee beans into Australia, there are a few important preparation steps you’ll need to bear in mind in order to comply with Australian Biosecurity Import Conditions.

  • Ensure your supplier sends your shipment free of contaminant seed, soil, animal and plant debris, and other biosecurity risk material. For more information on biosecurity risks, check out this guidance from the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water, and the Environment.  
  • When it comes to green coffee beans, they must be free of fruit pulp before arriving in Australia. 
  • Ensure each consignment of goods is wrapped in clean and new packaging. Straw packaging is prohibited as it could carry insects or toxic diseases. Second-hand packaging from fruit, vegetables, meat, or egg cartons is also banned for the same reasons. 

Shipping Costs 

If you don’t know how to import coffee beans to Australia, don’t panic, your coffee bean supplier will include shipping costs in the final quote for the service. This will vary depending on the country you’re shipping from and the terms you negotiate. The good news is that in Australia, coffee beans are not subject to any import taxes. 

One thing to bear in mind, though, is that often costs will add up because of logistical costs in the country you’re shipping from. Make sure they don’t catch you by surprise.

Australian Coffee Imports Product Labeling Requirements

According to Australia’s 1905 Commerce Act, any incoming shipments must follow specific labeling requirements in order to be allowed into the country. The two most important points to remember to include on your label are: 

  • Trade description —  a description, statement, indication, or suggestion as to how or by whom the coffee was produced, selected, and packed. This statement must be in clear, legible English.
  • Country of origin certificate

If your coffee is pre-packed for sale, then providing a trade description is optional. However, you must still provide notice of the country of origin. 

If you fail to comply with these requirements, your shipment may be seized by the Australian Border Force. Re-labelling could be permitted upon further examination.

Customs Clearance Declarations in Australia

All coffee bean shipments to Australia must be inspected by the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) in order to keep the country free of exotic pests and diseases.

Import permits are required for some shipments of coffee beans to Australia, such as Kopi luwak coffee. This form of coffee consists of partially digested coffee cherries that have passed through the alimentary tract of the Asian palm civet, a viverrid native to South and Southeast Asia. 

We recommend consulting an experienced customs clearance agent to find out whether your shipment requires an import permit or not.

Regardless of whether you need a specific import permit, the following documents must accompany your shipment in order for it to be imported: 

  • Certificate of origin
  • Phytosanitary certificate
  • Invoice 
  • Packing list
  • Airway Bill/ Bill of Lading
  • Packing Material Declaration form (if your shipment is packed in pallets)

Here at Those Coffee People, we export three different types of coffee shipments to Australia. For full information on the Australian Biosecurity Import Conditions (BICON) for each type of shipment, check out the links below.

Coffee Import Customs Duties in Australia

Although there is no tariff to import green or roasted coffee into Australia, other import fees and charges may apply. Consult an experienced import and customs clearance agent who is well-versed in Australian legislation on coffee bean importation to find out exactly which ones might apply to you.

Sales Tax on Coffee Sales in Australia

Coffee bought in the form of beans or ground beans is also exempt from Goods and Services Tax (GST) in Australia, which is a value-added tax of 10%. However, hot coffee sold as a ready-to-drink beverage in Australia is taxable.

Discover Our Range of Direct Trade Coffee Beans  

Here at Those Coffee People we’re experts at sourcing and supplying the finest direct trade Colombian green coffee beans. We venture off into remote areas of Colombia’s beautiful coffee-growing countryside to search for new and exclusive varieties, with the aim of identifying the most unique origins for you and your customers.

Explore our unique Colombian origins and discover the story of every estate we work with. We can fulfill and deliver orders of any size for buyers in Australia, contact us for more information.

Why Medellin is the Perfect Specialty Coffee Scene

Why Medellin is the Perfect Specialty Coffee Scene

Reading time: 6 minutes.

Is Medellin everything a coffee loving adventurer could ask for?

Medellin is the second largest city in Colombia behind Bogota, located in the state of Antioquia. It has an economy based on agriculture, textiles, energy, and a wave of rapidly growing tourism activities. As you have probably seen on Netflix, thirty years ago Medellin was famously plagued by drug cartels- a cancer that changed the peaceful and beautiful city into one of the most dangerous cities around the world. Today, Medellin is evolving from place troubled by social problems such as FARC, narcos and poverty into an innovation cluster of opportunities that appeal to local and international business alike.

1. Medellin was the founding place of the modern coffee industry in Colombia

Medellin was the founding place of the modern coffee industry of Colombia and is the home of specialty coffee bean suppliers, Those Coffee People. In the early 1900’s, a team of elite businessmen came together in Medellin to establish the National Federation of Coffee Growers of Colombia (FNC or Federación Nacional de Cafeteros de Colombia). From the FNC, an icon was born that would soon be known across all four corners of the globe- Juan Valdez. This “campesino” character of Juan Valdez aimed to personify the culture and traditions of Colombian coffee growers was probably one of the planet’s most successful marketing strategies in the 60´s. Juan Valdez was responsible for teaching the world about the coffee of Colombia!

Unfortunately, during Colombia’s time of social and political unrest the coffee industry took a large hit. Farmers’ profits were shrinking to a point where they couldn’t even pay their expenses so many farmers decided to exit the coffee industry. For a moment, Colombia saw the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit of its people dwindle as the coffee industry experienced a slow down.

2. Medellin is not only a great turistic city, is a perfect place to develop ideas and culture.

When the city started waking up from the nightmare of the drug cartel occupation, the world started to once again show interest in Medellin. People who took the initial risk to visit the newly safe Medellin, and created strong word of mouth advertising about the experience that they had with this hard working culture that was trying to clean up their name and reputation. Shortly after, the floodgates opened and the whole world started to recognize Medellin as a great touristic city. Travelers started discovering countless reasons to love Medellin including the warm and hospitable local culture, and the city’s strong position is developing music, sports, food, unique lifestyle and rapid urban innovation. These factors showed Medellin not only as a travel destination, but also a place to develop ideas and culture.

3. Medellin uses modern tactics of innovation into their coffee production

With all these events and developments, the city began to see a change it it’s coffee culture where for the first time, traditional practices were starting to change and leave more room for innovation. Keeping in mind the previously slowed down coffee industry, and the recent surge for innovation and improvements, farmers began to implement these modern tactics of innovation into their production! There was a growing international market for high quality coffee from Colombia promoting the production of a new wave of high quality coffee in small amounts. The mentality was changing from quantity to quality.

Those Coffee People discovered the great potential of this city as their home for their specialty coffee supply company. Amazing people, perfect geography for developing various qualities of coffee, a modern and organized city moving on a spirit of innovating, a charming place to live in an establish the headquarters, a city that already works with coffee in depth, and a wave of possibilities coming from the people who comes here to enjoy this beautiful city. The cluster of the innovation, the place of the possibilities, the city of the eternal spring- this is Medellin.

 

Based on your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. A guide to Sourcing and Exporting coffee from Colombia
  2. Coffee certifications in Colombia
  3. What defines Specialty Coffee?

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on May 2018 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

CREATION OF THOSE COFFEE PEOPLE

Creation of Those Coffee People

Reading time: 7 minutes.

In the summer of 2017 Those Coffee People Founders Jennifer and Andres met during a “bucket list” trip to Peru. In the south of the country sits a small desert oasis called Huacachina, a famous little village outside the town of Ica. One chilly morning, Jennifer went out to take breakfast in the boutique hotel she was staying in and found Andres on the  hotel patio enjoying a coffee. The patio was crowded so Jennifer went and took a seat at the open chair next to Andres and conversation quickly started. Standard traveler’s questions like “where are you from?” and “where are you going?” lead them to realize their paths were going to be crossing for the following week as they had the same travel plans from Huacachina to Cusco.

When traveling on your own, you quickly find that it is easy to bond with other travelers, and for Jennifer and Andres that was no exception. They quickly found that even though they came from different cultures and spoke different native languages, they both had a similar love for adventure, discovery, travel, and coffee. They traveled together from Huacachina to Cusco and continued to build an unlikely friendship through a shared experience of discovering Peru.

One evening in Cusco they were speaking about their travel plans after Peru. Andres was headed back to Medellin, Colombia, and Jennifer had tentative plans to head south into Bolivia. Not restricted by any actual travel bookings or reservations, Andres saw this as a prime moment to share some of the enticing points of going to visit his city. As a proud Paisa (a person from Antioquia state in Colombia), he quickly started pitching to Jennifer on how wonderful Medellin and the surrounding areas was, how unique and interesting the local coffee culture is. Jennifer had only heard about Medellin from Narco’s and didn’t have any motivation to make the trip there on her own, but after hearing out a persuasive pitch by Andres she decided to swap her plans of going to Bolivia to head north and discover the city of Medellin.

Arriving into the airport in Rionegro, a town on the outskirts of the city, her perception of Medellin was instantly turned onto its head. Dramatic mountainous landscapes with lush green vegetation spanned as far as the eye could see. As they drove from the airport into the city, the green didn’t stop in the normal way it does when entering a main city, but on the contrary buildings seemed to naturally embed themselves into the landscape in a beautiful combination of modern day metropolis and pristine beauty. It was no contest- Medellin was everything a coffee loving young adventurer could ask for.

It was no contest- Medellin was everything a coffee loving adventurer could ask for.

The next week followed with many visits to Medellin’s huge variety of cafes. Andres shared stories on the production side of the coffee supply chain through his family’s experiences and Jennifer shared unique stories of how she discovered people are changing the way they drink coffee across the globe. They agreed there was a huge paradigm shift happening in coffee consumption, but less developments happening on the production and supply chain side. Customers are now undoubtedly interested in learning about the story behind their coffee, direct trade is being seen as highly valuable, and average customers are starting to be conscious about specialty coffee. In this exact moment, the idea for Those Coffee People was born- a company that focused on establishing direct trade Colombian coffee around the world to align with the third wave of specialty coffee consumption!

Long story short, what happened in the summer of 2017 was the perfect storm where serendipity and opportunity collided and the idea for Those Coffee People was born.

 

Based on your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. Sourcing green coffee beans – A buyer’s guide
  2. A guide to importing coffee beans into Japan
  3. A guide to importing coffee beans in the US
  4. How to import green arabica coffee beans into Oman
  5. A guide to importing coffee beans into Saudi Arabia
  6. A guide to importing coffee beans into Kuwait

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on May 2018 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

How to Establish Direct Trade Partnerships?

How to Establish Direct Trade Partnerships?

Reading time: 3 minutes.

1. Consider stability, trust and exclusivity

Stability, trust, and exclusivity are some of the main reasons to consider going into a direct trade partnership, but with a myriad of different options available, how does a small or medium roaster choose the right direct trade partnership for them?

2. Analize not only the coffee quality but also their whole processes

When considering buying directly from origin make sure to analyze various key points in addition to simply their quality of coffee. If a company is lacking in logistics expertise, flexible minimum order quantity and shipping options, or overall professionalism in the company itself, it can turn the beautiful experience of buying coffee directly from origin into more of a nightmare.

Before you decide to engage with any direct trade partner make sure you complete the following checklist:

3. Is the coffee they are offering a one time item or will there be availability year after year?

4. Is the coffee being sold by a formally registered company with all necessary documentation and legal status?

5. Do the sales consultants speak your language?

6. Can they manage to comply with all necessary importation requirements in your country?

7. Are you offered a legal purchase order with official bank information and reasonable terms and conditions?

Here at Those Coffee People we take our partnerships with roasters and importers very seriously. We are a fully registered legal Colombian company, are native and fluent bilingual English speakers, and put a heavy focus on correct paperwork or labeling for easy of importation to the country of destination. We know that taking the leap of sourcing your coffee directly from origin compared with a local distributor is a big milestone in many roasters’ business development, and we are here to ensure that you have a partner you can trust and rely on.

 

Considering your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. Creation of Those Coffee People
  2. A guide to importing coffee beans into Japan
  3. A guide to importing coffee beans in the US
  4. How to import green arabica coffee beans into Oman
  5. A guide to importing coffee beans into Saudi Arabia
  6. Sourcing green coffee beans – A buyer’s guide
  7. A guide to importing coffee beans into Kuwait

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on March 2019 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

What Defines Specialty Coffee?

What Defines Specialty Coffee?

Reading time: 7 minutes.

What actually is specialty coffee?

After a global wave of  sudden awareness to specialty coffee circa 2017, we would like to address a very important topic, what actually is specialty coffee? It seems in some of the cafe’s we have visited, specialty coffee seems to be perceived as just a specialty preparation rather than a description of the beans themselves. According to the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s website, “…the term ‘specialty coffee’ was first coined by Erna Knutsen, of Knutsen Coffee Ltd., in a speech to the delegates of an international coffee conference in Montreuil, France. The concept was quite simple: special geographic microclimates produce beans with unique flavor profiles.”

The basic definition of specialty coffee was also supported by the understanding that specialty coffee beans would always be freshly roasted, and properly brewed.” The Specialty Coffee Association of America has created rating system in order to evaluate the quality of flavors in each type of coffee. The way the coffee is tasted is by “cupping” and the evaluation gives each coffee a quality rating on a 100 point scale. By standardizing the cupping, the SCAA intend to prevent the loss of meaning of the term specialty.

Specialty coffee retailers should strive to recognize the uniqueness and specialty of each origin, and the concept of terroir. Terroir, a term made popular by the wine industry, is described in Tanzer, Stephen’s What is Terroir as “the set of all environmental factors that affect a crop’s phenotype, including unique environment contexts, farming practices and a crop’s specific growth habitat.” Specialty coffee has its own terroir from the earth that gives each microlot its unique characteristics. Together, these factors all impact the coffee and give it an original profile.

1. Microlots

2. Special geographic regions and terroir

3. Special bean varieties

4. Its not just about preparation, its about the beans themselves.

Here at Those Coffee People we strive to offer our customers an extraordinary coffee buying experience through our grouping systems that differentiate the types of specialty Colombian coffee.

Group 1 (link) offers consumers unique Terroir of the lands of these farms. Each of our group 1 coffees is a single estate or grouping of a few farms from the same town. In this coffee you can experience the unique profiles and attributes that comes from the microclimates, soil composition, and unique harvesting methods of the farms. 

Group 2 (link) coffee offers the same terroir experience of our single estate producers but also a specialty profile beginning to emerge from the distinct processes and procedures implemented at the farms. In Colombia 100% of the coffee is hand picked because the land is so rugged a machine couldn’t possibly function. In group 2 you get an even more elevated experience because the farms all have strict protocols to ONLY pick the ripest beans leading to unique profiles and attributes in the cup. 

Group 3 (link) represents high scoring coffees with unique processes such as extended fermentation, natural, and honey. In Colombia, washed coffee makes up an overwhelming majority of coffee production because the government guarantees they will buy all of the production of every single coffee farmer as long as it is traditional washed process. Therefore having other processes in Colombia is a much higher risk for producers since the government won’t buy the coffee if they can’t find a private buyer. Those Coffee People has discovered and supplies some of the country’s best produced unique process coffee beans. Mango, pineapple, grape, tamarind, cognac and more unique flavors really emerge in this group. 

Group 4 (link) is our highest scoring group on average with coffees from traditional or exotic varieties. The Colombian government, in an attempt to protect the harvests against drought and diseases, created and heavily promoted new varieties of coffee that were very strong and resistant. Unfortunately these beans were more dull in flavor from the traditional varieties like Typica, Bourbon, Caturra, and Tabi. In group 4, we only include these traditional full flavored varieties as well as exotics like sudan rume, geisha, and wush wush. 

Reach out to us for your complimentary consultation of which group is suitable for your needs or take our online quiz to find out the same with the chance to directly order.

 

Based on your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. Creation of Those Coffee People
  2. Coffee certifications in Colombia
  3. A guide to sourcing and exporting coffee from Colombia

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on May 2019 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

 

 

Coffee Certifications in Colombia

Coffee Certifications in Colombia

Reading time: 8 minutes.

What are the meanings of Coffee Certifications in Colombia?

Over the last 20 years, there has been an increased appreciation for consumer products that come with certifications. It builds trust in consumers, creates a validation for producers and seems to be a great asset towards helping companies accomplishes their missions. Well-known certifications like “Fair Trade” and “Organic” are quite popular, but in the coffee environment there are other important certifications as well, including Bird Friendly, Rainforest Alliance, and UTZ. Here at Those Coffee People we take the time to carefully consider all certifications of our coffee origins and appreciate the different benefits each make to both the farmers and the environment.

1. Organic: the most well known worldwide.

In order to receive an organic certification, the farm must not have used prohibited substances on the land for a minimum time of three years. Prohibited substances included most synthetic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers. Another requirement specifically for coffee includes a buffer between the coffee and any other crop not grown organically.

There are different fees that must be paid by producers in order to receive the organic certification. Due to this cost, it sometimes disallows poorer farmers to be recognized as organic even if they abide by the standards. However, producers who are able to pay the fees will often benefit from being able to sell their product at a higher rate.

2. Fair Trade: The second most recognized certification

Essentially, a fair trade certification is an assurance that the producers are involved in profit sharing and can be paid fair wages for their work. This allows communities to grow and innovate in order to create sustainability and a better chance at the future. Certification is only available to democratically-organized cooperatives or associations of small producers, not individually-owned farms or estates, or those that rely heavily on hired labor. Cooperatives who are fair trade certified receive a minimum price per pound, with an additional premium if the coffee is also certified organic. In addition, producers receive the Fair Trade Premium above the purchase price that farmers democratically invest according to their priorities. These increased costs are of coursed passed on to the consumer, which give rationale if you’re paying more for a fair trade latte vs. a standard latte.

3. Bird Friendly

A Bird Friendly certification allows consumers to know that the producer is protecting the environment in a way that does not disrupt, beyond a certain extent, the local habitat of native species. Requirements include a having a canopy at least 12 meters high with the dominant tree species being native, a minimum of 40% shade cover even after pruning, at least two strata or layers of vegetation, made up of at least 10 woody species dispersed throughout the production area. In addition to these requirements, the coffee must also be certified organic. There is no certification fee but the producer must pay for periodical audits. These fees support bird conservation research. Producers with this certification are able to charge 5-10 cents higher per pound.

4. Rainforest Alliance, and UTZ

Rainforest Alliance and UTZ merged together in the beginning of 2018.

The Rainforest Alliance promotes standards for sustainability. It covers a number of ecological issues as well as community relations and fair treatment of workers. Certification is awarded based on a score for meeting a minimum number of an array of criteria. Producers with this certification can use the certification to negotiate a better price for their coffee, generally an additional 5 to 10 cents per pound.

UTZ   emphasizes on transparency and traceability in the supply chain and efficient farm management. The latter includes good agricultural practices such as soil erosion prevention, minimizing water use and pollution, responsible use of chemicals, and habitat protection.

In Conclusion

Certification was originally perceived as a strategy for strengthening the position of small coffee producers in the value chain. Consumers must keep in mind that these certifications cost the producers money — both in fees paid to the different certification bodies and in costs associated to changes in their methods to achieve the necessary standards. This often causes issues as some consumers are only willing to pay small amounts for these environmental or social impacts, which threatens the good work that the certifications are aiming to accomplish. In order to keep coffee trade sustainable, the final consumer will need to be willing to shoulder the costs.

 

Based on your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. Harvest report April 2020
  2. A Guide to Sourcing and Exporting Coffee from Colombia
  3. Health benefits of coffee

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on August 2019 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

Health Benefits of Coffee

Health Benefits of Coffee

Reading time: 6 minutes.

What are the benefits of drinking coffee?

1. Coffee consumption is linked with a lower risk of several types of cancer

Coffee health properties have been contested for years, but overwhelming research suggests the health benefits significantly outweigh the potential negatives. In fact, in a June 2016 report, the World Health Organization (WHO) officially lifted coffee from the list of potentially carcinogenic foods. It went on further to label coffee as potentially protective against certain cancers. The WHO is also not the only relevant organization to change their perception of the beverage as others are also recognizing the overwhelming studies that suggest major health benefits. World Cancer Research Fund International determined that coffee consumption was linked with a lower risk of several types of cancer. Additionally The 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (commissioned by the secretaries of the US Department of Health and Human Services and the US Department of Agriculture) declared, “moderate coffee consumption (three to five cups per day) can be incorporated into a healthy dietary pattern.”

2. Contains Vitamin B2, B5, Potassium, Magnesium and Niacin

Breaking down the contents of coffee also surprisingly yielded amazing results. and Coffee is way more than just beautiful brown liquid and a single cup of coffee contains:

  • Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): 11% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA)
  • Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5): 6% of the RDA
  • Manganese and Potassium: 3% of the RDA
  • Magnesium and Niacin (B3): 2% of the RDA

Furthermore, coffee can provide a massive amount of antioxidants. In fact, multiple studies including in The Journal of Nutrition show that most people get more antioxidants from coffee than both fruits and vegetables together.

3. Improves energy levels and brain function

Additionally, since coffee is high in caffeine we experience health benefits from the stimulating properties. It improves energy levels and various aspects of brain function, as well as improved mood. All of these can all lead to a more advantageous position for completing important tasks or work.

4. Boosts metabolic rate and increases fat burning

Several studies also link caffeine to boosting metabolic rate and an increase in fat burning. Various experts concluded that caffeine could boost metabolic rate on average between 3-11% while others attest it can specifically boost fat burning up to 10% in obese individuals and all the way to 29% in lean people.

5. Is linked to a lower risk pf getting Alzheimer, Parkinson and type2 diabetes

Coffee has also been proven to link to a reduction in certain types of diseases and cancers. Several studies show that coffee drinkers have up to a 65% lower risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease (which is the leading cause of dementia).  Additionally, in studies, coffee drinkers have a much lower risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, with a reduction in risk ranging from 32-60%. Coffee drinkers also have a reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes. According to a massive review that cross examined data from 18 studies with a total of 457,922 individuals, each daily cup of coffee was associated with a 7% reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Research also suggests that coffee may protect against cirrhosis of the liver; people who drink 4 or more cups per day have up to an 80% lower risk of developing the disease.

On a final note, it is with great pleasure that we can proudly say coffee can actually help you live a longer and healthier life. Considering the tremendous research that proves coffee can lower your risk of many diseases and cancers, and that there are mood-boosting principles associated with caffeine, it is clear that this is a beverage to be enjoyed with peace of mind. For an amazing source of freshly roasted coffee, you can check out One Coffee Snob for the best offers of Western Australia!

 

Based on your interest in this article, we recommend:

  1. A Guide to Sourcing and Exporting Coffee from Colombia
  2. Coffee certifications in Colombia
  3. What defines Specialty Coffee?

 

Editor’s note: This post was originally posted on August 2019 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.