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Why roasters love Guatemalan coffee: Connecting both ends of the chain

Inspired by our commitment to share Guatemalan coffee with the world, at Dinamica we strive to build sustainable partnerships throughout the complete coffee supply chain; this includes our partners outside the country of origin.

It comes as no surprise that we love Guatemalan coffee. However, to clear out our bias and learn why buyers and roasters love it too, we decided to have a chat with Brian Phillips, of Anthem Coffee Imports, based in Kansas City.

Quality, taste, and consistency

Guatemala enjoys global recognition for its quality coffee and processes; it is a pioneer in implementing innovative practices across Central America. According to Anacafe, Guatemala’s Coffee Association, Guatemala is the first origin country to profile coffee regions to show consumers how different varietals, microclimates and farming practices determine taste.

Guatemala continuously works towards better practices and higher quality in each cup. Roasters and consumers worldwide value our effort with each fantastic cup of coffee they savor every morning.

According to Brian, the diverse microclimates and distinctive growing regions in the country, renders a uniqueness that distinguishes Guatemala from others. “There’s such a diversity of flavor; if you’re looking for sweetness, a bright acidity, you can find these types of coffees,” he mentioned.

Furthermore, he explained how the hard work the country has done over the past 5 to 10 years hasn’t gone unnoticed. “It seems like in the last ten years, Guatemala has come a long way in post-harvest technology and producers are willing to experiment,” he observed.

When explaining why roasters prefer Guatemalan coffee, he pointed out two fundamental factors: consistency and flexibility.

“We know that they’re already on a certain level of quality. The coffee has a lot of unique characteristics; it can be elegant, wild, and floral. It’s very diverse!”, he mentioned. He added that its flexibility makes it an excellent base for a year-round blend, but also a fantastic single-origin option. “That’s kind of the beauty of Guatemalan Coffee. It can be used in many formats”.

Education and communication

Despite the considerable price difference between Guatemalan and other Central and South American coffees, many roasters not only continue to purchase significant amounts of Guatemalan coffee, but prioritize it in their menus.

Brian credits this trend to the excellent job Anacafe has done to educate and communicate buyers, at the same time that producers support this hard work as “they have clearly established paths towards education”. Furthermore, he observed that the industry’s infrastructure in Guatemala is better organized than in other origins.

Roasters and buyers value continuous updates from origin: “it has been very helpful that producers get to cup their coffees, get real feedback about their coffees, and understand the value of that coffee. We’re working together with farmers on behalf of roasters; we want to work together and help both to close the gap”. Brian explained that Guatemala’s structure has made it easier for them to work with this origin country: “producers are involved; the structure is very stable,” he said.

Trust and integrity

How is communication relevant without trust? For us, they go hand in hand! We love being the representatives of our partners in Guatemala, to make them feel sure we have everything under control at origin and that they will get the same excellent coffees they taste here delivered to their warehouses.

In our conversation, Brian praised the trust and integrity built around our partnership. “We don’t have boots on the ground in Guatemala. We needed to find somebody that we could trust and had integrity; who we could rely on”. He emphasized that Dinamica’s vertical integration, being involved in every step and keeping a tight chain together, is a guarantee that every coffee they purchase will get to them exactly the way it is supposed to. There is no doubt that roasters will receive the best quality out there. “It’s something that you can’t really quantify on paper. We could just tell by the organization, from the top-down, that Dinamica would be able to deliver the product on time, with integrity and consistency,” he admitted.

Integrity is another key asset of working with our team in Guatemala: “I’m not there to make sure the producers are getting paid what I’m told they’re getting paid. I put that trust in them, in their integrity, in knowing they are doing things right on our behalf,” Brain detailed. He observed this trust takes weight off their shoulders: “you sometimes take it for granted, but working with producers like them makes things easier, makes our life a lot easier; we know they are taking care of business down there for us”.

As Brian mentioned, it is important for us to make our partners feel comfortable and safe. In the end, we are a big family and nourishing these partnerships is one of our goals.

“We look at ourselves as an extension of the Montenegro family in Kansas City, in the US; we treat each other like the same company, like they’re almost Anthem at Origin. It’s not like that on paper, but that’s how we look at it”

The Guatemalan coffee that many people around the world enjoy every day, speaks for us; it shows the quality and hard work of many producers around the country and, as Brian stated, is a testament to “the melting pot of different cultures, ideas, growing techniques, and processing,” which makes Guatemalan coffee beautiful. And we couldn’t agree more!

We love being the connection between the hard-working producers in the country and those who make it possible for coffee lovers worldwide to enjoy a tasty cup of coffee.

We will continue to work towards developing strong relationships with our existing partners, as well as with new ones, while providing amazing coffees that we know you enjoy!

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