Online bidding opens today for the 7th annual Taza Presidencial green coffee auction in Bolivia, with the final bids coming Friday, Dec. 10.
The competition dates back to 2015 as part of a government effort to promote specialty coffee in Bolivia, a country that has routinely produced captivating specialty coffees, although at volumes far smaller in recent decades than its neighbors to the west and east, Peru and Brazil, respectively.
Celebrating the producers of those coffees is the Taza Presidencial, which has helped restore some international market connections previously established by the Cup of Excellence green coffee competition and auction, which took place annually in Bolivia until 2009.
This year, national and international judges for Bolivia’s Taza Presidencial identified 21 coffees that scored 86+ points and have moved on to the international auction.
Sandra Elisa Loofbourow, tasting room director of United States-based importer Royal Coffee’s The Crown, served as head international judge for the competition.
“Having spent the last year studying this market, and now finally tasting these coffees and talking to Bolivian industry professionals throughout the supply chain, I am more convinced than ever that Bolivia is close to the tipping point of bringing exceptional specialty coffee to the international market,” Loofbourow told DCN following the competition.
The top-scoring coffee (91.45) is a washed-process red Catuai variety produced by Juan Calani Vargas in the Cochabamba department. Interestingly, the coffee was one of only four winning coffees that did not hail from Bolivia’s renowned growing region Caranavi. More information on all of the winning coffees and the producers behind them can be found here.
The virtual auction launches today, with individual coffees being offered for pre-bidding. Final bidding will happen on Friday, Dec. 10, with 10-minute bidding windows dedicated to each lot.
Registration is free. The buyer will be responsible for exportation and transportation, with arrangements facilitated by the Bolivian government, according to the organizers.
The full auction details can be found here.