The ceremony of awards for the First São Paulo Coffee Quality Competition was held recently in Santos. The competition was initiated in 2002 and organized as a campaign of the São Paulo Coffee Roasters Union, the São Paulo Coffee Chamber and the Secretary of Agriculture of the State of São Paulo, to encourage producers to improve the quality of their crops and receive better prices. Visits were made by the sponsors to the principal regional growing centers to promote and explain the objectives, specifics and incentives of the campaign.
Ceremony was presided by Nathan Herszkowicz, president of the São Paulo Coffee Chamber and the Secretary of Agriculture of the State of São Paulo, and responsible for organizing the campaign and the event. A total of 178 producers participated with 64 samples selected for a final classification by a panel of eight professional classifiers at the coffee laboratory of the Santos Commercial Association. The coffees were examined in blind numbered tests for type, bean size, ten lots (five natural and five peeled-cherry types) were chosen by computer calculation of the points received. The selected lots were then offered by a closed auction system held at the chamber of Commerce, to examine and cup the numbered lots and enter their price ideas in a sealed envelope. A minimum bid price was established based on the previous days quotation for strictly soft coffee in Santos (R$210 per 60 kilo bag) plus a fixed premium.
The auction resulted in bids for the coffees ranging from R$210 per 60 kilo bag) plus a fixed premium.
The 10 winning producers were presented at the ceremony and only then received the results of the bidding. The producers were from Piraju, Tejupa and Sarutaia in the Noreste zone of the State, Marilia, and Lencois Paulista in the Paulista zone and Mococa, Caconde and Pinhal in the Mogiana zone.
The winner of the award was Januaria Aparecida de Andrade, a producer of “peeled cherry” coffee from Piraju who received a bid of R$275.70 from Decotrade do Brasil. During the ceremony there were acknowledgments of various sponsors and supporters of the campaign including Eduardo Carvalhaes Jr.,coffee museum and Jose Moreira da Silva, Santos Chamber of Commerce.
Also present at the ceremony was Dr. Ernesto Illy, president of illycaffe, Treiste, who, it was noted, was instrumental in improving Brazil coffee quality by initiating 12 years ago the First Annual illycaffe Awards. This acted as an incentive for other programs to award quality and awakened the trade to the potential for Brazil specialty coffees.
The First São Paulo Coffee Quality Award was named after Aldir Alves Teixeira, a Brazilian agronomist with over 40 years’ experience as Assessor to States and federal agencies in technical coffee research in Brazil and other producing countries. He is presently scientific consultant for illycaffe and a member of the São Paulo Coffee Chamber.
- By Harry C. Jones