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Coffee for Justice: Chemistry in service to small-holder coffee farmers ACS Science and Human Rights Webinar presented October 9, 2012 Susan C. Jackels.

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Presentation on theme: "Coffee for Justice: Chemistry in service to small-holder coffee farmers ACS Science and Human Rights Webinar presented October 9, 2012 Susan C. Jackels."— Presentation transcript:

1 Coffee for Justice: Chemistry in service to small-holder coffee farmers ACS Science and Human Rights Webinar presented October 9, 2012 Susan C. Jackels Seattle University

2 Telling the story of collaboration with Nicaraguan small-holder coffee farmers The Coffee Crisis of 2001 The Coffee Crisis of 2001 Nicaraguan Farmers response Nicaraguan Farmers response Involvement in coffee quality improvement with farmers, using chemistry Involvement in coffee quality improvement with farmers, using chemistry

3 Coffee Crisis Coffee Crisis: Volatility in the Price of Coffee on the World Market N. Luttinger and G. Dicum, The Coffee Book, Norton, 2006

4 Response to the Coffee Crisis in Nicaragua since 2001 Small holder producers have strengthened cooperative organizations in order to: Small holder producers have strengthened cooperative organizations in order to: –Improve coffee quality (hope for access to specialty quality market) –Gain certification (Fair Trade and Organic) –Gain access to international markets International relief and development organizations began providing assistance. (USAID, Catholic Relief Services, others) International relief and development organizations began providing assistance. (USAID, Catholic Relief Services, others) In 2002, I became involved through association with ISJACHEM, University of Central America Managua and Catholic Relief Services In 2002, I became involved through association with ISJACHEM, University of Central America Managua and Catholic Relief Services

5 Why improve coffee quality at some expense to quantity? Gain access to specialty market (quality must be higher than 80 on a 100 point scale so the global buyers get interested) Gain access to specialty market (quality must be higher than 80 on a 100 point scale so the global buyers get interested) Hope for a relationship with a buyer that persists year-to-year Hope for a relationship with a buyer that persists year-to-year Direct trade can get a good price but must have a connection and good quality Direct trade can get a good price but must have a connection and good quality

6 Why improve coffee quality at some expense to quantity? Organic/Fair Trade market: producers still cant find a buyer for all organic coffee (our coffee coops this year sold 70% of their coffee on conventional market) Organic/Fair Trade market: producers still cant find a buyer for all organic coffee (our coffee coops this year sold 70% of their coffee on conventional market) Small differential between organic and conventional market prices (2012) Small differential between organic and conventional market prices (2012)

7 A research /service project in service to Nicaraguan small-holder coffee producers The goal is to help producers get out of the Coffee Crisis by improving their coffee so it can be sold on the Organic /Fair Trade or Specialty market (or direct trade).

8 Partner Organizations Catholic Relief Services Nicaragua/ Caritas Matagalpa Catholic Relief Services Nicaragua/ Caritas Matagalpa Nicaraguan farmer coops CECOSEMAC and ADDAC Nicaraguan farmer coops CECOSEMAC and ADDAC University of Central America Managua University of Central America Managua National Science Foundation National Science Foundation Seattle U Seattle U UW Bothell UW Bothell Winds of Winds ofPeace MJ Murdock Charitable Trust MJ Murdock Charitable Trust

9 Nicaragua

10 Nicaragua Locations of Cooperatives We were connected with these coffee farm cooperatives through Catholic Relief Services

11 First and foremost, make good relationship with the community

12 Focus groups: We asked the farmers for their questions What is the effect of over-fermentation on coffee quality? What is the effect of over-fermentation on coffee quality? How can fermentation be controlled to optimize coffee quality and maintain consistency? How can fermentation be controlled to optimize coffee quality and maintain consistency?

13 Coffee Cherry Anatomy Mucilage Layer removed by fermentation after outer skin and pulp are removed mechanically. What did you say? Fermentation in coffee processing?

14 Coffee Processing on the Farm

15 How can we answer the farmers question about over fermentation and whether it affects their coffee quality? We began by doing a field study on the farms to find out changes happening during coffee fermentation.

16 A field study of coffee fermentation on small farms in Matagalpa in 2004 SC Jackels and CF Jackels, Journal of Food Science, 2005, Vol. 70, pages C321 – C325.

17 Developed tests for pH, ethanol, lactic acid and glucose

18 pH profiles of coffee fermentation All batches were ready to wash at the same pH.

19 Conclusions from field study The regular pattern of pH change during fermentation may be useful for producers. The regular pattern of pH change during fermentation may be useful for producers. The results provide the basis for a simple method to control fermentation on the farm by monitoring pH. The results provide the basis for a simple method to control fermentation on the farm by monitoring pH. Necessary to determine the relationship between roasted coffee quality in the cup and fermentation time (over fermentation). Necessary to determine the relationship between roasted coffee quality in the cup and fermentation time (over fermentation).

20 2006 controlled fermentation experiments On each of eleven days divided one large batch of pulped coffee into six small buckets for fermentation On each of eleven days divided one large batch of pulped coffee into six small buckets for fermentation Each day: Fermentation stopped at three different pH ranges Each day: Fermentation stopped at three different pH ranges Cupped the coffee to determine quality Cupped the coffee to determine quality Does a relationship exist between fermentation pH at time of washing and coffee quality?

21 Controlled fermentation experiments

22 Three pH ranges each day Wash 2 buckets in each pH range: Wash 2 buckets in each pH range: Range 1: pH = Range 1: pH = Range 2: pH = Range 2: pH = Range 3: pH = Range 3: pH = Ph during the time of fermentation Time

23 pH monitoring and washing Stephanie Kleven, testing in lab. Stephanie Kleven and Roberto Rivas, washing coffee.

24 Coffee Quality by Cupping in Laboratories Scores on 66 coffee batches are in the range Scores on 66 coffee batches are in the range Good coffee, but not outstanding Good coffee, but not outstanding Are there significant changes with systematic over fermentation? Are there significant changes with systematic over fermentation? Sol Café Laboratory Cupper with international reputation

25 Cupping Results Qualities: Fragrance and Aroma Acidity Flavor Body After-taste Balance Ranges: 90 – 100 (excellent); 80 – 89 (very good); 70 – 79 (commercial); 60 – 69 (poor); <60 (not acceptable)

26 Do the averages differ significantly? Change (1 2)Change (1 3) Sol Café Results -1.1 (t=1.41; p=0.10) -1.5 (t=2.00; p=0.04) Paired sample t- test One-tail probability

27 Quality changes of individual paired samples Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test (one-tail): Range 1 2 (p = 0.043) Range 1 3 (p = 0.055)

28 Controlled fermentation experiments: Conclusions Weak relationship is observed: lower values of pH term (over-fermentation) correspond to reduced coffee quality: -1.5 point change in quality for pH change of approximately -0.5 units. Weak relationship is observed: lower values of pH term (over-fermentation) correspond to reduced coffee quality: -1.5 point change in quality for pH change of approximately -0.5 units. A more powerful study, with more replicates would strengthen this conclusion. A more powerful study, with more replicates would strengthen this conclusion. Does a relationship exist between fermentation pH at time of washing and coffee quality? S. Jackels, C. Jackels, C. Vallejos, S. Kleven, R. Rivas and S. Fraser-Dauphinee, Proceedings of the 21 st ASIC (Association Scientifique Internationale du Café) Meeting 2006, pp. 434 – 442.

29 Transferring knowledge to the coffee farmers…

30 Fermentation optimization by coffee producers Can producers themselves use pH measurements to improve coffee quality through fermentation optimization? 100 kits for small farmers: pH paper, watch, instructions, materials

31 Workshops for Coffee Producers

32 Treatment applied by producers Before: Measure pH at time of washing coffee, making no change from usual routine. Then submit a sample for drying, roasting and cupping. Before: Measure pH at time of washing coffee, making no change from usual routine. Then submit a sample for drying, roasting and cupping. Make changes in fermentation to optimize. Make changes in fermentation to optimize. After: Measure pH at time of washing an optimized batch. Then submit a sample for drying, roasting and cupping. After: Measure pH at time of washing an optimized batch. Then submit a sample for drying, roasting and cupping.

33 Spearman rank correlation: rho = , N = 69 Inverse Correlation is significant (P = 0.004) The producers changes in pH and fermentation time were correlated Fermentation Time versus pH: After – Before

34 Did the coffee quality improve? Average Cup Scores Lab Samples Samples Before (SD) After (SD) (SD) Change (SD) P test Sol Café (4.2) 81.5(3.5) 0.43(3.8).17 All Samples IncludedLabSamples Before (SD) After (SD) (SD) Change (SD) P test Sol Café (3.6) 81.8(3.1) 0.43(2.6).09 Damaged Samples Removed

35 Was the fermentation optimized by coffee producers? Answer: Maybe Farmers successfully controlled fermentation with kits No statistically significant change in quality, however. Crop quality problem: Before-step was mid-harvest at peak of quality, After-step was end of harvest when quality diminished. S. Jackels and C. Jackels, Proceedings of the 21 st ASIC (Association Scientifique Internationale du Café) Meeting (Montpelier) 2006, pp. 434 – 442 (2006)

36 Cup scores by cooperative Name of Cooperative Average Score Before Average Score After P Value Las Nubes Payacuca San Antonio Siares Pacayona El Castillo harvest: all of these cooperatives were in the 82 – 83 range.

37 Social Analysis: What did the coffee producers learn from us? Increased awareness of the importance of quality control and potential for improvement Increased involvement and interest of the children Higher morale and more hope for the future

38 2009 Engineering project to build a coffee mill M.D. Marsolek, J.T. Alcantara, P. Cummings, L. Quintero, M. Wynne, C. Vallejos, C.F. Jackels, S.C. Jackels, International Journal for Service Learning in Engineering, June 2012.

39 Acknowledgements to International Scientific Teams Faculty Faculty Prof. Susan Jackels, Seattle University (USA) Prof. Susan Jackels, Seattle University (USA) Prof. Charles Jackels, Univ. of Washington Bothell (USA) Prof. Charles Jackels, Univ. of Washington Bothell (USA) Prof. Carlos Vallejos, Univ. of Central America Managua (Nicaragua) Prof. Carlos Vallejos, Univ. of Central America Managua (Nicaragua) Prof. Cipriano Lopez, Univ. of Central America Managua (Nicaragua) Prof. Cipriano Lopez, Univ. of Central America Managua (Nicaragua) Prof. Michael Marsolek, Seattle University (USA) Prof. Michael Marsolek, Seattle University (USA) Students Students Seattle University: Stephanie Kleven, Jack Chacon, Joshua Alcantara, Patrick Cummings, Luis Quintero, Michael Wynne, Angelica Omaiye, Zachary Kamine, Kathleen Bacarro, Czarina Franco, Diana Heaney, Spencer Ubben, Stella Navia, Jody Cook, Britt Mueller, Tam Pham, Ivon Octavia, Jessica Angginasah, Fera Widjaja, Amy Sly, Kerina Powell Seattle University: Stephanie Kleven, Jack Chacon, Joshua Alcantara, Patrick Cummings, Luis Quintero, Michael Wynne, Angelica Omaiye, Zachary Kamine, Kathleen Bacarro, Czarina Franco, Diana Heaney, Spencer Ubben, Stella Navia, Jody Cook, Britt Mueller, Tam Pham, Ivon Octavia, Jessica Angginasah, Fera Widjaja, Amy Sly, Kerina Powell University of British Columbia (Canada): Scott Fraser-Dauphinee University of British Columbia (Canada): Scott Fraser-Dauphinee University of Central America Managua (Nicaragua): Roberto Rivas, Diana Zelaya, Gema Medina, Maria Auxiliadora Castillo, Ervin Garcia University of Central America Managua (Nicaragua): Roberto Rivas, Diana Zelaya, Gema Medina, Maria Auxiliadora Castillo, Ervin Garcia Farmers and NGOs Farmers and NGOs Coffee farms and families of Matagalpa, Nicaragua Coffee farms and families of Matagalpa, Nicaragua CECOSEMAC and ADDAC Cooperatives and Caritas Matagalpa CECOSEMAC and ADDAC Cooperatives and Caritas Matagalpa Catholic Relief Services/Nicaragua Catholic Relief Services/Nicaragua

40 Acknowledgements for Support US National Science Foundation (CHE ) US National Science Foundation (CHE ) Engineers Without Borders Engineers Without Borders Tetra Tech, Inc. Tetra Tech, Inc. Winds of Peace Foundation Winds of Peace Foundation MJ Murdock Charitable Trust MJ Murdock Charitable Trust Seattle University Seattle University University of Central America Managua University of Central America Managua Catholic Relief Services/Nicaragua Catholic Relief Services/Nicaragua

41 Questions


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