Tradition and Technology Tradition and Technology
Preserve the balance between tradition and technology in order to guarantee coffee quality and sustainability
This is one of the four criteria that define the exceptional universal value of the Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia (CCLC).
The balance between conservation of the environment and production is crucial for maintaining the unique qualities of the CCLC. This equilibrium has ensured competitiveness and quality in a living, dynamic, and changing coffee growing landscape that conserves its essence over time.
During the past 150 years, small coffee producers have innovated cultivation techniques in order to overcome the challenges imposed by the environment: increase in production costs, phytosanitary plagues and diseases, decreasing productivity, and environmental conservation.
This continuous improvement has been possible thanks to the development of a “knowledge circuit” that supports coffee growers and their productive activity. The circuit is comprised by diverse institutions such as the National Coffee Research Center (Cenicafé) responsible for technologic developments, the Rural Extension Service in charge of technology transfer, and the Manuel Mejía Foundation which trains extensionists and coffee growers.
The top practices suggested by Cenicafé for Colombian coffee growing are:
- Establishing production cycles
- Growing castillo variety
- Producing colinos in farms
- Using coffee pulp for seedbeds
- Optimal planting densities according to the production system
- Adopting integrated weed management
- Fertilization based on soil analysis
- Broadcast fertilization
- Integrated management of coffee berry borer
- Renovating aged plantations
- Conservation of the initial plant population
- Calibrating spraying equipment
- Selectively picking of ripe beans
- Adopting ecological wet milling
- Calibrating wet milling equipment
- Properly drying coffee
- Food production in coffee plantations
- Using recording and cost analysis tools