Nestled among the mountains at the base of Mt Sinabung in North Sumatera, Indonesia. Imam Syukri Syah Tarigan is a member of a coffee farmer collective that works with Kopi Kultur. Here he talks about the farm, coffee process & challenges in the industry.
Can you tell us a bit about your farm collective?
The name of the farm collective is Perkebunan Klompok Petani Kopi Cimbang Sinabung, we have 25 people in 14 villages in Mt Singabung who we connect to and work with.
The coffee is grown in Desa Cimbang, Kabupaten Karo & Sumatera Utara. At the moment we farm 15.5 hectares of land.
What types of coffee do you farm?
Arabica varietals p88, Gayo 1, and Sigararutang.
How would you describe the taste of the beans?
People say the beans taste sour like citrus – orange, but also fruity & sweet like palm sugar & a little bit of spice.
Where do your coffee beans go?
Our beans in Bali, Jogjakarta, Bandung, Jakarta, Bekasi, East Java, Singapore & Malaysia
Are you coffee beans roasted on the farm, if so what is the technique?
We do roasting with the roaster machine, we get help and support from the Karo Department of Agriculture.
How long has the farm been in operation?
It first started on 20 March 2013 after Mt Sinabung became active & erupted. So now it has been more than 4 years already
What change have you seen in the coffee farmers?
Coffee became the priority in the area when the orange tree could not grow optimally because of the ashes from Mt Sinabung from a long time ago. At this time during harvest season, farmers were getting more incoming from the coffee since the plantation was growing.
Are the production and crops good?
So far so good, everything is well, we even do everything mostly manually.
What is the harvesting process you use?
We handpick the beans and always choose the red ripe coffee cherry. Mostly we do with the semi-washed process but we also do natural & honey process as well.
What are some of the challenges facing your farm?
Our challenges are infrastructure and far-reaching transportation – getting the coffee beans to markets.
How does Kopi Kultur help you?
They help us to sell and distribute our beans in Bali. Also, they give us some advice for coffee process & always share information about the right coffee beans.
Why is it important to have a partner like Kopi Kultur?
So important because they can share about coffee in the downstream & help us to develop our coffee when our coffee was affected by Mt Sinabung eruption.