The mysterious number of the coffee bean


The mysterious number of the coffee bean

  • Have you ever seen certain numbers that are often seen in coffee shops?

As we all know, Ethiopia is the birthplace of Arabica coffee. There are thousands of natural coffee varieties in this area, and 99% of the genes of coffee varieties can be found in Ethiopia. Due to the wide variety of varieties, it is difficult to identify and classify them, and the Ethiopian government is unwilling to disclose the variety information out of the protection of natural coffee. Therefore, many coffee bean varieties exported from Ethiopia are collectively called "Heirloom", which is what I usually say. All species are native to Ethiopia.

  • There are really many varieties of African coffee beans

After 1970, Coffee Berry Disease (CBD) spread rapidly to major production areas in Ethiopia. Coffee cherries infected with the berry disease gradually changed from green to gray-black, and eventually became necrotic on the branches. Once coffee trees are infected with this disease, it will cause heavy losses of 70% to 80% or more to coffee farmers.

  • Virus-infected coffee trees cost coffee farmers heavy losses

In 1972, coffee growers used chemical fungicides to prevent CBD. Although there were certain results, spraying chemical pesticides only treated the symptoms but not the root cause. The long-term plan is to develop natural varieties with high resistance to coffee berry pathogens. In 1973, the Ethiopian coffee organization JARC (Jimma Agricultural Research Center) identified a total of 19 locations in the southwest region for collection. Until 1975, researchers collected a total of 639 seed samples, conducted technological identification and field experiments on them, and finally selected 13 coffee varieties that were resistant to CBD, drought-tolerant, high-yielding, and had good flavor. .

  • Farmers decide to improve varieties instead of pesticides
During this period, JARC compiled these CBD-resistant coffee varieties that were improved and developed from coffee mother trees in the "1974/1975 CBD-Rexistent Selections" catalog. The 74 in front of the number represents the year 1974, that is, the year the variety was cataloged, and the last three digits are the test sample numbers. The 74 series we are familiar with were all cataloged during 1974. This is the origin of 74110, 72112, and 74158 coffee bean varieties.
  • There have been studies since 1974

The 74110 variety was selected in 1974 from the original "mother tree" in Bishari village, Metu province, Illuababora region, Oromia region. JARC released this variety in 1979 after studying its resistance to coffee berry diseases and overall yield. 74110 The trees are short and compact, with broad leaves and thin fruits. 74110 is also widely grown because of its floral and citrus flavors. This variety won the honors of 2nd, 3rd, 8th, 12th, 17th and 27th in COE 2020.

  • One of the common numbers: 74110

Variety 74112 also originated from the Metu-Bishari forest and was released in 1979 for its disease resistance and potential to increase yields. Its trees are also small and compact, with tiny leaves and relatively small fruits. This variety is able to grow well in climates similar to those of the original parent tree. The 74112 variety shows typical citrus sourness and fresh floral aroma in flavor.

  • Common number two: 74112 Variety 74158 is very similar to 74110, but it is not widely planted. It is mainly planted in the Gera, Jimma and Illuababora regions. The overall particle size of 74158 green beans is small and neat, round and smooth. The flavor shows a soft berry tone and a clear spice aftertaste. In the 2020 COE, 74158 varieties won the 1st, 7th, and 11th place.
  • The third common number: 74158 Won multiple awards in COE Cup of Excellence
  • Often have good results with COE

If you have any questions about the flavor or brewing, you can contact us through the following social media

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