With tea produced on a higher belt and coffee produced on the lower belts, now our own little coffee farm is just spreading its roots in the hills of Fikkal. After spending about one and half years in a controlled nursery environment, they are now out there fending on their own learning to survive in the climate of Fikkal. Currently, our coffee plants are almost two and a half feet tall and in the next two years, we will be ready to yield the first wave of production.
Western countries have developed extensive legislation for organic products. The conditions that must be met before coffee may be marketed as organic is both comprehensive and well defined. No coffee may be brought to the marketplace and labeled organic unless it is proved to conform to the regulations. In other words, coffee can be marketed as organic only when it is certified as such by a recognized organization or certifier, based on regular inspection of all stages of production, processing, transporting and roasting of the coffee.
Growing any organic product, including organic coffee, is more than just leaving out fertilizers and other agro-chemicals. Coffee produced in this way should instead be called ‘natural’ coffee and to the surprise of many, the industry looks upon this as non-sustainable production. This is because, in the long run, the soil will be depleted by natural production, which is often referred to also as ‘passive cultivation’ or ‘organic by default’.