With a heritage of growers, exporters, importers, and roasters, Orinoco Coffee & Tea has produced and sold the finest coffees and teas since 1909.

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Abyssinia – also known as present-day Ethiopia – is widely considered to be the birthplace of coffee. Today, it is also the 5th largest coffee producer worldwide. Ethiopia is known for its diverse typography, geography, and climates. Altitudes can range from 100 meters below sea level to 4600 above in the Semien Mountains (the roof of Africa), and environments can range from dry deserts to the lush tropics. These ideal conditions yield a coffee that is renowned for its low acidity and fruity flavors. The Legend Continues An Ethiopian legend tells of Kaldi, a goat herder in the Kaffa Highlands, circa 850 AD,

With a population of 50-million people, Sumatra is the sixth largest island in the world, and one of the three main islands that form the Southeast Asian country of Indonesia. Dutch colonists initially brought coffee to Indonesia by way of Yemen in 1699. It wasn’t until more than a century later that the crop arrived in Sumatra, and by the late 19th century commercial production had begun on the island. Sumatran Coffee at a Glance Sumatra is located in Indonesia on the equator, which splits the island into two equal zones, each with its own unique climate. The fertile volcanic soil and lush

When you store tea it is important to remember, whether loose or bagged, that tea is highly susceptible to five main factors: • Air • Moisture • Heat • Light • Odor Contact with oxygen will cause tea to turn brown and lose flavor over time. Additionally, moisture of any kind will ruin tea (steer clear of storage spots near the sink, dishwasher, or microwave). To aptly safeguard from both conditions, an opaque, airtight container is the best method to store tea. Glass containers may be attractive but are discouraged because exposure to light can degrade your tea leaves over time. Metal or ceramic containers are ideal. Likewise, tea

Today’s coffee farmers are aging out of the workforce as they begin to move from middle age and into, what should be, retirement age. Most smaller farms are family businesses and the younger generations are finding farming to be a high-risk and low-status vocation. As these young people head off to the city to find jobs that require less labor and offer more security, it then falls to the older generation to struggle and maintain the family farms with little or no help. These younger generations are not wrong about the need for change in order to make coffee farming a

  In early August, a team from Orinoco Coffee & Tea – Business Assistant and first-time origin trip participant Charlotte Berry and President Pedro Ramirez – flew out of Baltimore to see what could be found in Peru. At 6 a.m. Saturday, August 3, Orinoco’s plane arrived in Lima. THE INVITE The adventure began back in July, when Orinoco was invited by Peru’s tourism agency – PROMPERÚ – to participate in an early August coffee buyers’ mission to South America. The proposed journey would lay the groundwork for future importing opportunities with Peru. The itinerary included orchestrated visits to coffee farms, cooperatives, and more in

Are you such a coffee fanatic that you’re starting to see it, literally, everywhere you go? There might be a non-hallucinogenic reason for that. Coffee is everywhere, from clothes to candy to alcoholic beverages. In a society increasingly enamored with the idea of sustainability – coffee has begun to pop up in the most interesting places that aren’t your reusable cup. Here are just four examples: A Good Vintage Coffee-infused wine is a concept that truly could have died on the vine, but the Modesto, CA-based Apothic Wines appears to be making it work. Last year, the winery introduced its coffee-infused red wine, boasting “fruity red

What does it take for a coffee shop or café startup to survive in a crowded marketplace? John Cheng, a part-time account manager at Orinoco Coffee & Tea, has a pretty good idea. Over the years he’s helped launch three different cafes in the Baltimore area. His latest endeavor – Aveley Farms Coffee Roasters – leans into the roasting side of the business, while still providing customers with a unique atmosphere in which to enjoy their brew. “We make good coffee and we know how to do it right,” John says. “And we casually educate the community that we serve.” Lessons to be learned

  Behind every cup of coffee is a story. Behind many stories, a struggle. Women make up almost half of the agricultural workforce worldwide, and nearly 43% in developing countries, according to this 2016 report from The State of Food and Agriculture. Coffee production, in particular, relies heavily on a female workforce. At the farm level, women laborers are largely responsible for collecting the coffee cherries, sorting the green coffee beans, overseeing the drying process, and so much more. Here, women’s struggles run the gamut, from severe income imbalances, a lack of representation, land control limitations, and – sadly – hazardous working conditions stemming from

Coffee is harvested at different times in different parts of the world. Producing regions that straddle the equator, such as Ecuador, can produce throughout much of the year. Arabica coffee grows in a narrow region of the tropics known as the Coffee Belt, which stretches from Central America to sub-Saharan Africa to Asia. There are a number of seasonality maps online, illustrating the various phases of coffee production, from harvesting to delivery. According to Orinoco expert Steve Izzo, those maps are approximations, at best. And that’s because occasionally, your favorite roast may not be available stateside when you have a hankering for a number

Portable coffee brewers are becoming a take-along staple for campers, beachgoers, backpackers, and more. You may be concerned that whipping up a nice espresso on the open trail could make you the subject of ridicule. Will your fellow travelers roll their eyes and make sarcastic comments about you “roughing it” or call you names like “Smokey the Barista?” It’s possible. But you know what? Let them laugh. We coffee lovers know how important a great-tasting, quality cup of java is to happiness – not to mention survival – and there’s absolutely no shame in attempting to take that satisfaction along with you during

Much like an automated coffee maker, we’ve been programmed to use hot water each and every morning to brew a decent cup of coffee. But one alternative brewing method is staying strong; a method in which time – not temperature – is used to forge a flavorful brew. Cold brew coffee is all the rage in coffee shops and cafes – and even dots the refrigerated shelves of your local grocery store. More and more coffee-lovers have begun making cold brews at home, too. And with good reason – the process produces a balanced and extremely flavorful concentrate that is both healthy and

Drop by your local café on a sunny, spring morning, and you may very well find the employees behind the counter roasting beans while chatting up the early risers. Boutique café roasting is growing by leaps and bounds nationwide, as popular demand for artisanal coffees and advances in roasting technology continue to intersect. But Orinoco Coffee & Tea master roaster Juan-Carlos Ramirez believes this fad may ultimately fade. Visiting a coffee house where beans are roasted on-site is a novelty for the public, he says, particularly for those who have never experienced the process firsthand. There’s a certain nuance to the café roasting scene;

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