We have been working in Haiti since 2007 providing agricultural education, mostly for rabbit production, but have recently also become involved with some coffee producers and now offer 100% Haitian unblended, single region coffee beans direct from the mountain forests of Haiti.
Devil’s Gulch Ranch purchases green beans from Haiti Coffee, Inc, the importation company which they co-own, and has them roasted for local sales in Petaluma. We invite you to share one of the best kept secrets in the world of gourmet coffee. From the dense and lush tropical mountains of Haiti, comes a coffee bean that produces a rich, aromatic, and sensational coffee drinking experience. Haiti’s climate, mountain elevations, and the shade provided by the indigenous trees all provide the perfect growing environment for outstanding coffee similar to the finest coffees of Jamaica and other Caribbean countries. We are proud to introduce this coffee to you and share the secret with coffee enthusiasts everywhere.
Haitian coffee is grown a mere 700 miles off the coast of the US, yet it remains hidden in obscurity by the mystique of Haiti’s challenging history. Coffee was introduced to Haiti in 1725 and then spread to all 10 departments, thriving in colonial times. Haiti became a valuable producer on the international market, producing 50% of the world’s coffee in the 1750’s, and as recently as 1948 it was third in the world. The decline of the coffee sector in Haiti started around the beginning of the 1970s with the lowering of the price of coffee on the international market. In the early 1990's coffee cultivation in Haiti was further negatively affected by trade embargos, natural disasters, as well as coffee rust, a fungal disease.
Few Haitians these days can make a living growing coffee and the knowledge is becoming lost with the passing of the older generation. Until recently there has been more value in cutting the trees for charcoal than processing and selling the beans.
Haiti Coffee, Inc, is working collaboratively in Haiti with other companies and NGO’s to revitalize the coffee industry and to facilitate export. With the help of Haiti’s own Makouti Agro Entreprise and Partners of the Americas Farmer to Farmer program, Farmers now have a voice, access to knowledge and resources to redevelop their agricultural heritage to its former glory. All Haiti needs is to re-establish the value chain and resurrect the skill and knowledge that were once there.
There is a really good synergy with the rabbits needing shade from the coffee plants, and/or the larger shade trees. The coffee from shade grown trees is better and therefore more valuable, helping to keep them from cutting the trees for firewood. The rabbits can be fed the leaves from many of the trees which the farmers can harvest themselves, so no need to spend money they do not have for rabbit feed, adding further value to the trees and helping to protect against deforestation. Then the rabbit manure can be used to fertilize the coffee plants, and of course the rabbits can be a source of great nutrition and income.